Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Grocery Shopping: Just Say No


Just say no to going too often, that is. Grocery shopping is actually a lot of fun for me because it's money I can spend without feeling guilty. We need food, so it's not frivolous spending. That said, there are a lot of ways you can waste money at the grocery store AND a lot of ways you can save money at the grocery store, even if you're trying to be green. There's so much to talk about in terms of saving money and being green at the grocery store, that I am breaking this up into multiple posts.

Green and Thrifty Grocery Tip #1: Go shopping less often.

  • Why is this going to save you some green? The more often you go to the grocery store, the more things you will buy! It's that simple. Each time I go shopping, I often pick up a special dairy- and soy-free treat for myself--and those things are expensive! Yet I pick one up whether I'm doing my full shop or just darting into the store for a forgotten item. So each time I go to the store, there's at least two dollars gone forever. And I usually don't just grab one extra thing. I'll suddenly remember other things we need like extra applesauce, bread, bananas, sports drinks for my husband, etc. Suddenly a trip for a stick of butter turns into a $30 grocery spree. Not going in the first place is how you keep that money in your pocket. This is not new news to you, I imagine. But how many of us really follow this advice? Last month, my family decided that we were finally going to take this advice to heart. Instead of going shopping once per week, we now go every other week. It takes more planning and sometimes we eat all the tastiest food right away, but we are definitely saving money. It also helps us to use what we have in our cupboards, instead of just letting it sit there while we buy more groceries. By going grocery shopping every two weeks, we save approximately $160 a month!!

  • So why is going shopping less often a green practice? Shopping less often is green  for many reasons, including that you will be saving gas/pollution by not traveling to the store. You also aren't buying all of the packaging around your purchases and you will be saving plastic or paper bags.

It does take extra work, but going to the store less often can be a great way to save money and is a small thing we can do to help out the earth. Even making fewer "emergency" trips to the grocery store is a good place to start.

Happy Saving!
Christine
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