Campus News

Coupons, planning can help with grocery costs in tough times

To save money on your food budget, UGA Cooperative Extension offers these tips:

•Plan ahead. Think about the meals you need to prepare between now and the next time you will shop. The more detailed your menu is, the more help it will be when you get to the grocery store.

•Never go into the grocery store without a list. Shopping without a list makes you more likely to buy impulse items.

• Buy fresh fruit and vegetables when they are in season. For example, instead of buying blueberries in winter months and paying for the shipping and import fees, buy them in the summer, when they are more likely to be grown nearby.

• Food companies release coupons to increase sales, especially for new products. Use coupons to save money on items you usually buy anyway. Avoid buying items you would not normally purchase just because of a coupon.

• Even with a coupon, brand name products are often more expensive than other options. Consider buying the store brand instead of the national brand. If you compare ingredients, you will often find no difference.

• Use the unit price to compare costs.
The unit price is how much the item costs per ounce, pound or other unit. The largest size is not always the cheapest.