Ways to save money on groceries
My favorite time of year is when the farmer’s market comes to town. My family enjoys fabulous fresh food and my food budget gets a break. We all feel healthier, look healthier, and my bank account looks better too. What could be better than that? But, did you know that even if you don’t go to the farmer’s market, if you buy at your local grocery store, or even Wal-Mart, buying seasonally can save money because even chain grocery stores buy local products on a seasonable basis.
Seasonal Produce Lowers Fuel Costs — Most grocery stores source things from the local market first, to find the least expensive items. Local items are less expensive because they don’t have to use as much fuel to get it to the final location. With gas prices closing in on $4.00 per gallon, and higher in some areas of the country, transpiration cost can add quite a bit to your grocery bill.
Supply & Demand Affects Seasonal Produce Price — During the season for any typical produce item the supply is going to be greater than the demand due to the fact that produce does not last forever. Try shopping at several different grocery stores to find out what they’ve over stocked and are trying to move from their shelves.
More Nutrition Per Dollar Spent in Seasonal Produce — By buying in season you’ll get foods that are more nutritious causing your body to crave less food, therefore cutting down the cost of food. It’s a fact that nutrition, rather than fullness dictates how fast you get hungry again after eating a full meal. So, it just makes sense to buy in season to save money because you’re going to need less of it to be satisfied.
Avoid Waste by Buying Seasonal Produce — Any fresh item that has been shipped 3000 miles to your store isn’t going to have much in the way of nutrition left, not to mention taste. If you purchase something fresh at the grocery store, then don’t eat it because it doesn’t taste good (tomatoes often have this problem) then you’re just wasting your money.
Support a Farmer by Buying Seasonal Produce — When you buy local, in season, you are supporting local farmers and therefore supporting your local economy. The more people who do this, the less expensive the produce will become. Local farmers will grow more to accommodate the demand, and soon, the prices will go down as well.
Seasonal Produce Simply Tastes Better — Produce eaten in season tastes better than produce eaten when it is not in season. There are many factors at play including picking unripe produce, then shipping it thousands of miles away while it ripens. You’ll be shocked at how good your local, in season produce tastes compared to what you normally buy. It’s healthier, cheaper, and simply yummier to eat local seasonal produce.
A really great website for finding out what is in season in your area is HERE on the epicurious website. Click on your state to find out what is in season in your area.
Stay tuned for my next post where I’ll be talking about the “grocery list”. 🙂