Rising grocery prices are forcing Australians to change their shopping habits to fill their carts, new research suggests.
A survey of 1005 Australians by online financial broker Savvy shows that 62 per cent are concerned about increases in the cost of food and groceries and 56 per cent plan to switch to cheaper brands.
But more worrying is the 48 per cent of respondents who said they will simply “buy less” food.
Although that might be a practical short-term solution, it’s unlikely to be sustainable beyond a few months.
So with that in mind, here are four tips to slash your grocery bill.
1. Swap brands
Savvy PR and communications manager Adrian Edlington said finding cheaper alternatives to your preferred brands is a good way of cutting costs.
He said this is particularly true for products where the difference in quality will be difficult to notice.
“For things like sugar and flour, I think your home-brand options are certainly best,” Mr Edlington told TND.
Savvy CEO Bill Tsouvalas also recommended buying ugly but otherwise high-quality fruit and vegetables as supermarkets often sell them at a discount.
2. Expand your horizons
You might have a favourite supermarket, but splitting your shopping between different shops could help you take advantage of the best deals.
Keep abreast of upcoming deals through catalogues and supermarket apps, and consider buying in bulk from stores like Costco or Aldi.
Finder personal finance expert Kate Browne said if you’re after fresh produce, head to your local market or fruit and vegetable shop.
3. Cut down on meat
Meat is one of the costliest items in our weekly grocery shop, with beef prices in particular having increased 8.1 per cent over the past year.
Ms Browne said cutting down on your red meat consumption could help cut your food costs.
Research by Deakin University shows taking up a diet comprising of less meat, along with minimally processed and sustainably produced food, could save families $1800 per year.
“You don’t have to go vegetarian, but if you just try a meat-free Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday, you can save an awful lot of money,” Ms Browne said.
4. Plan ahead
Mr Tsouvalas said organisation is crucial to saving money at the checkout.
Checking your fridge and pantry and writing a shopping list before heading to the shops minimises impulse buying and makes doubling up on products that you already have less likely.
“Most Aussies are going into Coles or Woolies without an organised plan as to what’s necessary,” Mr Tsouvalas said.
“You need to be more organised and redirect some of your spending to more essential products.”