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Old 01-25-2017, 03:34 PM   #21
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We usually do three stores too. Walmart, a local chain store, and the store closest to DH's work. Sadly, that one is closing. The owner died, and his wife didn't want it anymore. Even sadder, it serves the south end, which is mostly low income and has many people with limited transportation. Now they'll have to spend more for gas, as the next closest store is at least 8 miles away. I'm really hoping another local chain opens up another grocery store there.
That's sad. I used to work in medical transportation, and the the lower income areas had no grocery stores. And the nearest one (5 miles away) shut down.

They have small convenience stores, but the prices are high. I did notice that the c-store owners were pretty smart and stocked basics like bell peppers, lettuce, tomatoes as well as hamburger, chicken, etc.. As well as basic deli and hot foods. But the prices were kinda high.
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Old 01-25-2017, 04:02 PM   #22
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I went to 3 stores for our groceries

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That's sad. I used to work in medical transportation, and the the lower income areas had no grocery stores. And the nearest one (5 miles away) shut down.



They have small convenience stores, but the prices are high. I did notice that the c-store owners were pretty smart and stocked basics like bell peppers, lettuce, tomatoes as well as hamburger, chicken, etc.. As well as basic deli and hot foods. But the prices were kinda high.

Yeah, it is sad. There are a couple fast food places and some convenience stores with high prices in the south end, but these poor people will really have a hardship. And our public transportation is pretty nonexistant here.

The little neighborhood store was convenient for us, but we can afford to go to the other stores much further away. These other people can't.
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Old 01-31-2017, 04:31 PM   #23
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I continued the experiment today. I went to Aldi (pack of mushrooms for 39 cents, carrots for 99 cents, milk for $1.89, chips, some tortillas, etc) and then I went to Sparkles. Sparkles had 5 pounds of taters for 99 cents, head of lettuce for 99 cents, bone in chicken breasts for 99 cents a pound, Food Club canned veggies for 33 cents each.

Then I went to Giant Eagle for the rest of the stuff. In hot foods, their 8 piece fried chicken was a dollar off -- $6.99. I even splurged and bought a 12 pack of beer. Total was $90 at all 3 stores. And I'm building up a stock (like the canned goods) for future weeks.

Going by the ads and shopping at 3 stores is saving us about $50/week. If I ever skip Sparkle Market, I can go to the other Giant Eagle which is near Aldi's.
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Old 02-01-2017, 07:08 PM   #24
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I work in a grocery store so I get a majority of my stuff there, it is also one of the better priced stores in the area, so if I didn't work there, I'd still shop there.

I also shop Aldi on a regular basis, some of their deals can't be beat. About once a month I go to Costco for some essentials.

In my area pretty much every neighborhood has one of each chain grocery store, so there isn't much traveling to get from one store to another.

Back when I lived with my parents and both dad and I had lost our jobs and I would do the weekly shop on a very tight budget, so that's when I realized how much can be saved making a plan and shopping more than one store.
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Old 02-01-2017, 09:19 PM   #25
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If you have them in your local store, check the areas for "specialty foods from around the world"... Depending where you live, (and what you want to cook) there are some real bargains to be had for basics like tinned tomatoes, chick peas and beans, and I have found large pouches of the spices I use most frequently, at a fraction of the cost of the ridiculous small bottles I used to buy. All of this within the same store. They are meeting the needs of the local community. And (as a part of the local community) I am very happy about it!
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Old 02-01-2017, 09:42 PM   #26
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If you have them in your local store, check the areas for "specialty foods from around the world"... Depending where you live, (and what you want to cook) there are some real bargains to be had for basics like tinned tomatoes, chick peas and beans, and I have found large pouches of the spices I use most frequently, at a fraction of the cost of the ridiculous small bottles I used to buy. All of this within the same store. They are meeting the needs of the local community. And (as a part of the local community) I am very happy about it!
YES!

Our Hispanic section has a variety of spices for a fraction of what you'd pay for McCormick in the spice aisle. I pick up small pouches of things like rosemary for $.69 pretty much everything in that section is a bargain!
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Old 02-01-2017, 09:55 PM   #27
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YES!

Our Hispanic section has a variety of spices for a fraction of what you'd pay for McCormick in the spice aisle. I pick up small pouches of things like rosemary for $.69 pretty much everything in that section is a bargain!
Exactly!
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Old 02-01-2017, 10:40 PM   #28
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Ive found that Spices in my local Indian store are significantly less expensive then when bought in the regular grocery store ( along with almonds, cashews..). The quality has been good, I just think they have such high demand and buy it in crazy bulk, ( usually sell it in bulk too). Also, the canned stuff ( like beans, tomatoes) are unrecognizable brands ( maybe popular in their country), and are also usually less expensive. That being said, I'd try a can first before loading up, just to make sure the quality is satisfactory.
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Old 02-02-2017, 09:00 AM   #29
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My supermarket has two aisles dedicated to Ethnic foods on one side of aisle one and on the other side along with aisle two, Hispanic foods. Goya has a whole aisle dedicated to their products exclusively. I used to use the Goya aisle to cut through because early in the morning, most Hispanic women are taking their children to school and not shopping. But I have noticed that lately, that aisle is getting a bit crowded. And the majority of the shoppers in that aisle are non-Hispanic. The rest of the world are discovering what a great quality the Goya products are and at a very reasonable price.

I buy the Badia brand of spices. I get the smaller size jar as opposed to the McComick. I don't buy the restaurant size. That brand offers a housewife size that is much bigger than McC. brand. The only time I might consider buying the restaurant size is around Christmas time. When I do a lot of baking. My whole dang family love the taste of cinnamon and nutmeg anything! Pumpkin sweets are another one they can't get enough of through the whole year of the calendar.
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Old 02-02-2017, 10:00 AM   #30
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I usually only go to 1 store, but I decided to take a page out of my mom's playbook (she goes to 3 stores). So I got the 3 weekly fliers (Aldi, Giant Eagle, and the local IGA) and planned out what I was going to buy at all 3.

My mom goes to Target, Albertson's and another store. She lives in California.

I probably did save about $30-$40 I'd say. Kind of a pain in the butt, but worth it. I went to Aldi first and got some grass fed hamburger, value pack of hamburger, their little 2 pack of bacon wrapped filets. And a bunch of basics like veggies, tomato sauces, diced tomatoes. Their butter is dirt cheap ($2.50 for a box).

Then I took it all home and put it away and then headed out to the other 2 stores.
I use local independents for a lot of my weekly shopping but go to Aldi about once a month. I find their stuff excellent. My only complaint is all the non-grocery stuff they have on display which they force me to buy

As far as their food stuff is concerned I find that the fruit and veg are good buys but only if you are going to use them within a couple of days. They "go over" rather quickly - but then I have two good independent greengrocers on my daily routes so perhaps I'm a bit spoiled.

Unfortunately there are still people in the Uk who are snobbish about Aldi. Do I care?

We also have Lidl in the UK but there isn't a branch near enough to me to make it worth me using it.
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Old 02-02-2017, 11:19 AM   #31
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I been into Aldi in the Netherlands and in UK and in the Netherlands the two shops we where in look like ****, you know Oh we didnt have time to make things look presentable and nothing was in the order. The on in Uk was fine, looked like a grocery shop, the only problem we had was 3 boys trying to get into my clothes, well knowing it wouldn't fit them. *sigh*

I do go to Lidl, will get past there next week for the valentine selection, which honestly weird. But this year they have skipped the heart shaped chicken nuggets and are doing red heart shaped ravioli.

I do like Tesco in the UK and Marks and sparks...
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Old 02-02-2017, 01:32 PM   #32
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I forgot, we also shop at a 4th location, Restaurant Depot.
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Old 02-02-2017, 03:16 PM   #33
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Unfortunately there are still people in the Uk who are snobbish about Aldi. Do I care?

We also have Lidl in the UK but there isn't a branch near enough to me to make it worth me using it.
Yeah it is seen as a budget store, here, but the stores are super clean and modern. Managed well. And you're in and out in a hurry.

If you're brand agnostic, you can sure save $$$$$. Giant Eagle had pasta sauces for 99 cents a jar (Del Grosso brand). Even the cheapie brand ones are usually $1.75 a jar. Kinda of picked over though, but they did have plenty of "traditional" left -- just no mushroom, garlic, etc. flavored ones.

Veggies are usually a buck a can for Del Monte, Libby, etc., but Sparkles had Food Club for 33 cents each.
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Old 02-02-2017, 03:59 PM   #34
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I visit maybe 3 or 4 different stores, but not on the same day!
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Old 02-02-2017, 06:01 PM   #35
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I cook out of the pantry and freezer, always have. I hardly ever have to shop. When I do, it is because I have used something up, finally.
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Old 02-03-2017, 07:27 AM   #36
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I been into Aldi in the Netherlands and in UK and in the Netherlands the two shops we where in look like ****, you know Oh we didnt have time to make things look presentable and nothing was in the order. The on in Uk was fine, looked like a grocery shop, the only problem we had was 3 boys trying to get into my clothes, well knowing it wouldn't fit them. *sigh*

I do go to Lidl, will get past there next week for the valentine selection, which honestly weird. But this year they have skipped the heart shaped chicken nuggets and are doing red heart shaped ravioli.

I do like Tesco in the UK and Marks and sparks...
The two Aldis that I use in the UK are tidy and spotlessly clean. The company seems to have a good reputation for treating its staff properly.

I don't use Tesco if I can avoid it. They have a reputation for treating their suppliers very badly - instances of forcing the supplier to pay them in order to continue to be stocked in the stores - usually Tesco had wangled things so that they were the sole outlet for the supplier's product. This isn't hearsay - the BBC devoted a whole programme of Radio 4 to this issue, naming suppliers who had been driven out of business by Tesco's shenanigans! They also are (in)famous for paying their milk suppliers less than the cost of production after they have manoevered them into being sole supplier by giving them what looks like a good deal. Again information comes from reports from the BBC.

I like M&S. They are expensive but the quality's there so I use them for special occasions. I also use the Co-op regularly . Their goods and their ethics are excellent. They treat their suppliers well and are very big in Fairtrade with their own-label products and if the customer is a member we get "divi" - 5% of what you spend on their own-label products goes back to the customer and 1% goes to a local good cause of the customer's choice. Now THAT'S good business!

We also have ASDA which is part of the Walmart set up. I'd starve before I'd shop there.

As I said before, I'm lucky in that we have small independent food shops where I live. I also have doorstep delivered milk. It's distributed by a small local company which markets the milk on behalf of local farmers and pays them a reasonable cut. It comes in re-usable glass bottles too so no unnecessary waste for landfill.

I expect this all sounds incredubly quaint for all you sophisticated Yanks
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Old 02-03-2017, 11:17 AM   #37
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The two Aldis that I use in the UK are tidy and spotlessly clean. The company seems to have a good reputation for treating its staff properly.

I don't use Tesco if I can avoid it. They have a reputation for treating their suppliers very badly - instances of forcing the supplier to pay them in order to continue to be stocked in the stores - usually Tesco had wangled things so that they were the sole outlet for the supplier's product. This isn't hearsay - the BBC devoted a whole programme of Radio 4 to this issue, naming suppliers who had been driven out of business by Tesco's shenanigans! They also are (in)famous for paying their milk suppliers less than the cost of production after they have manoevered them into being sole supplier by giving them what looks like a good deal. Again information comes from reports from the BBC.

I like M&S. They are expensive but the quality's there so I use them for special occasions. I also use the Co-op regularly . Their goods and their ethics are excellent. They treat their suppliers well and are very big in Fairtrade with their own-label products and if the customer is a member we get "divi" - 5% of what you spend on their own-label products goes back to the customer and 1% goes to a local good cause of the customer's choice. Now THAT'S good business!

We also have ASDA which is part of the Walmart set up. I'd starve before I'd shop there.

As I said before, I'm lucky in that we have small independent food shops where I live. I also have doorstep delivered milk. It's distributed by a small local company which markets the milk on behalf of local farmers and pays them a reasonable cut. It comes in re-usable glass bottles too so no unnecessary waste for landfill.

I expect this all sounds incredubly quaint for all you sophisticated Yanks
No, not at all. I wish we still had dairies that delivered. Up until the 1960's or so, a lot of families would get their milk from local or regional dairies. And they probably got other dairy items as well, though I was born in 1972 so I never witnessed this. My mom piled us into her Plymouth wagon/estate go go to the supermarket.

We did have a neighbor, though, who worked for a local dairy. My dad was a mechanic and would fix his cars for free or almost free, so he'd bring us milk, cheese, butter, sour cream, etc.. It was all in retail packaging.

I do remember a couple of local dairies that had dairy stores and also they'd sell fresh eggs. One of them even had a restaurant attached. They sourced their beef from their own ranch/farm, freshly made ice cream made in house. It was great food.

Tesco sounds like our Wal-Mart. They also use draconian methods to cut supplier prices to the bone. Also, millions (or at least hundreds of thousands) of their employees are on benefits due to Wal-Mart not hiring them FT, offering benefits themselves, so on. I can't stand Wal-Mart, and I don't find their prices to be all that much lower.
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Old 02-03-2017, 11:59 AM   #38
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I did add an additional trip because after Aldi's, I went home to put the stuff away. It would've been OK in the car for 30 minutes or so while I went to the other 2 stores.
I have two insulated shopping bags that I put my refrigerated and frozen foods into while shopping, and a small styrofoam cooler in the trunk of my car for multiple store visits. I throw a blue ice pack into the cooler just before leaving the house.
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Old 02-03-2017, 11:00 PM   #39
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Mad Cow, we have the same practice here in the states. We do have the same practices here. It seems like it should be illegal. It sounds like they are holding the suppliers hostage unless they agree to their terms. Our main newspaper "The Boston Globe" also printed a report about it. Kudos for you for not patronizing that store.
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Old 02-04-2017, 10:18 PM   #40
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(Addie....just FYI....her name is Mad Cook, not Mad Cow...lol)

I'm in a small town - 3 miles from one end of town to the other - and only 2 major grocery stores. I usually shop at Albertsons, because it's closer and not on the main boulevard but every now and then I'll go to Staters. It depends on what I need and what's on sale. If I want to go to Costco, Trader Joes, or any other major grocery chain, it's over 200 miles round trip so I don't get there often.

We do have a WalMart out near the county line, but I rarely go there.
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