How to save on groceries this summer

DENVER — The average cost of a barbecue this July 4 is up 17% according to the American Farm Bureau Federation. He estimates consumers will pay about $69.68 for their favorite barbecue dishes, about $10 more than last year.

For a group of 10, it’s about $7 per person. The market basket survey shows for groceries this year compared to 2021:

  • Ground beef is up 36%
  • Chicken is up 33%
  • Pork chops are up 31%
  • Lemonade is up 22%
  • Potato salad is up 19%
  • Hamburger buns are up 16%
  • Vanilla ice cream is up 10%
  • Chocolate chip cookies are up 7%

“As with everything else, shoppers are going to see their grocery bills go up significantly,” said Shawn Martini, vice president of advocacy for the Colorado Farm Bureau.

Many factors play into the price increases, such as the war in Ukraine, supply chain disruptions, COVID-19, drought, and the rising cost of grass, feed, fertilizer , plastic and gas.

“The big issue is fuel prices; diesel prices for farms and ranches, diesel to get food from the farm to the processing plant then to the manufacturer and finally to the grocery store are significantly higher,” Martini said.

Martini says that like everyone else, farmers and ranchers are feeling the effects of inflation and it’s affecting their mental health and bottom line.

There are, however, some positives, such as the price of strawberries down 16% this year thanks to a good harvest. The price of dairy products is also down overall, like the price of cheese down 13%. Potato chips are also slightly cheaper at 4% less per bag.

Martini says the closer you can get your produce to the producer or source, the lower the prices are likely to be, because there’s less transportation.

Mile High on the Cheap’s Laura Daily, meanwhile, says there are ways to shop smart and save a little money this summer.

“You have to be a smart shopper,” Daily said.

She noticed that even household products like toiletries and cleaning supplies were up 10-20%.

Tip: Be sure to sign up for your grocery store’s loyalty program because you’ll see discounts just for walking through the door.

She says there may also be store or manufacturer coupons, but those are getting harder to find. There is, however, more of a move towards digital coupons.

“Look at these inserts. If you don’t get the flyers in your newspaper, when you go grocery shopping, the first thing to do is see what’s in that sales insert,” Daily said.

Also watch out for in-store sales and check clearance lockers, even at grocery stores. Items may be on clearance because their expiration date is approaching or because the company has decided to rebrand the product.

She’s also been known to try to negotiate with store managers for clearance items that haven’t sold for a while.

“Maybe you’re going to have to go to several stores. I know it’s really hard because gas is so expensive. We try to consolidate our groceries, but most stores are within a mile or two of each other. So you can go to three or four stores and find the place that has maybe the lowest price,” she said.

Another tip: maybe brand loyalty is a thing of the past. Generic or store brand items are often the same product made by the same manufacturers but are less expensive.

Conversely, if there’s a brand you absolutely love, look for other ways to cut costs, like changing the brand of paper towel or toilet paper. Daily says compromise is key. Buying in bulk may also not result in a ton of savings.

She also warns customers to watch out for the so-called shrinkage. This is where companies can keep the same look and price of a product, but include less.

“What they do is they put less cereal, less cookies or less liquid in a bottle. So you have to start paying attention to the stickers that are under each product that say the price per ounce or the price per unit,” Daily said.

She knows it can be tedious to spend a lot of time at the grocery store scrutinizing each product and driving from place to place to find the best deal, but she says a little legwork can saving consumers a lot of money as prices continue to fall. ascend.

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