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6 Food Economy Tips

Updated on November 21, 2012

Money is tight at the moment, with many countries suffering from vary degrees of economic crisis. Cooking for whole families can be very expensive, so whether your a Mother of a big family, struggling with grocery bills or just a young student looking to save costs on Food to spend them elsewhere, the following advice will hopefully be useful to you, some of which you are bound to already know but will stand as a good reminded to what you need to be doing and some of which will hopefully be something you haven't really considered much.

Buy In Bulk

The greater the quantity you buy things in, the greater the value. Not only is it economically beneficial due to the lesser packaging required but also environmentally friendly. Here is a classic example, from my local store ASDA in England but the principle still applies in any country;

1 Pint of milk = 49p

2 Pints of milk = 89p

4 Pints of Milk = £1.18

If you multiply 49p by 2, you get 98p, yet you can buy 2 Pints together for 89p.

If you multiply 49p by 4, you get £1.96, for only 4 pints of milk; yet if you buy it altogether in bulk it'd be nearly half that price at £1.18.

Buy On Special Offer

If you see a product which you tend to buy on special offer, don’t JUST buy the quantity you would normally buy it in, buy as many as you can; (This will be dependant on your finances and also the expiration duration of the item in question). Once you get in the habbit of buying all your items months in advance at a cheaper rate, you will have saved money on them each time you WOULD have had to buy them at a higher rate; out of special offer. Here are a few examples of the benefits of buying on special offer.

Shop Around

Each and every store will price their items differently, its not always simply a case of one being cheaper than the other, sure some will on average be cheaper than others on the whole but in every place you will find one of your items cheaper than the other, now nobodies suggesting that you do your weekly shop split over several Supermarkets and walking a street or two just to save a few coins, is just a little OTT. The idea is to buy these cheaper items in bulk from each place whenever your there.

4x Can of Princes tuna from one supermarket = £4.00

4x can of same brand Princes Tuna from another supermarket near me = £2.50

So i buy months worth of tuna at once whenever i go there, Tuna is sealed in an airtight tin, surrounded by preservative Brine and so stays fresh for months if not years, therefore why not get at least a few months worth of Tuna at once, Saving 40p per can

Don't Waste Left Over Food

What your looking at on your plate is not just left over food for the bin, its generally a good bit of nutrition that has a cost. Wrap it In tinfoil, clingfilm or whack it in a Tupperware tub and freeze it. If you have a family pet, put some on their plate, in the long run this will save on Pet Food.

Pack Your Own Food

Take your own food to work/college/school; you can pay up to $5 (£2.50) for your average sandwich. You could make this yourself and pack it in your bag for at least half as much, I would even go as far to say it'd be 75% cheaper. Another added benefit is that you will get to choose what goes into the sandwich for instance.

Bulk Your Meals Out With Carbs

It tends to be your proteins which are expensive, the likes of your meats. If your gonna make meals heavy on the meat, then it might get a little expensive. Bulk your meals out with cheap Carbohydrates, such as Rice, Bread and noodles. When your cooking for a whole family, this becomes even more important, sadly a dish heavy in good meat and protein can end up being very expensive for several people, if a recipe suggests using 4 fillets of chicken, consider only using 3 or 2 and bulking the rest out with the rice and vegetables.

1kg Chicken = Roughly £10

1kg Rice = Roughly £1

A ten fold difference. If your still determined to get your Protein requirements cheap, your best bet will be to add Lentils, kidney beans and other pulses to your dishes.


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    • CCahill profile image

      CCahill 5 years ago from England

      Great point Rebecca, Pulses tend to be much much cheaper than meats, i recently started adding Red Kidney Beans to as much things as i could, so economical.

    • Rebecca2904 profile image

      Rebecca 5 years ago

      Great advice! Another way to get your protein requirements more cheaply is to follow a vegetarian diet. Obviously at lot of people won't want to do that, but there's nothing stopping you from just eating a vegetarian diet for just one or two days every week - you might even find you like it and want to do it more often!

    • CCahill profile image

      CCahill 5 years ago from England

      Food for thought haha oh very nice Rajan, economic food for thought i hope ;)

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 5 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      This hub is certainly food for thought. Some very interesting ways to save on food costs.

      Voted up, useful and interesting.

    • CCahill profile image

      CCahill 5 years ago from England

      Cheers Brett

      @ Donnah - i was not aware of that, i suppose it makes sense, if the growers/farmers get less grown, then the value of each unit will have to increase for them to stay in business. good point.

      i think these tips are something that everyone is kinda aware of anyway, its hardly a breaking revelation but maybe just could do with being reminded of, we forget and forget to do these things.

    • donnah75 profile image

      Donna Hilbrandt 5 years ago from Upstate New York

      The news tells us that the cost of food will go up this year due to bad growing conditions (not enough rain). We will all need to consider how to save a bit to continue to put food on the table. This will get people thinking.

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 5 years ago from Thailand

      Good cost cutters there, while also maintaining a healthy intake.

      Up, useful and shared.

    • jbrock2041 profile image

      jbrock2041 5 years ago from Park City, UT

      Great hub. We often forget about how little actions, like eating out for lunch often makes a difference in our checkbooks. The only critique I have, and it's more to do with grammer, is on number 5 you use dollars instead of £. Me being from America, understands $ but £ but being consistent with what you use. And capitalizing your I's.

    • internpete profile image

      Peter V 5 years ago from At the Beach in Florida

      Good info here. A lot of money can be saved from just a few simple tips! I like the design of this hub too. Voted up and shared!

    • CCahill profile image

      CCahill 5 years ago from England

      @Jenna Cheers Jen, hope so

      @beingwell leftover day wow thats an efficient system youve got there ;)

      @Nick Nak Yeah not like were ever gonna stop needing to buy food unless we evolve to photosynthesize like plants ha

      @Monica its not easy is it, i mean people generally don't have to money to buy anymore than they immediately need for that week, so buying things for months in advance can be a bit of a ideal world thing but it is the right thing to do

    • monicamelendez profile image

      monicamelendez 5 years ago from Salt Lake City

      I can do a lot better at buying a lot when things are on sale. I'm terrible at this and I'm sure I would spend a LOT less if I would do it!

    • nick nak profile image

      nick nak 5 years ago

      Great suggestions, I have just been thinking about ways to make money go further and food is a big expense and it needed be.

    • beingwell profile image

      beingwell 5 years ago from Bangkok

      At the moment, I'm cooking for two. These are still great tips since I don't like wasting food. We always have a leftover day, sometime in a week so save on grocery bills. hahaha!!

    • Jenna Pope profile image

      Jenna Pope 5 years ago from Southern California

      Very good suggestions that will help lots of readers. Voted up.