Grocery Prices Are Up; How Experts Save While Shopping – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
New government data released on Wednesday showed that April prices for a range of goods rose the most since September 2008. Food prices also rose, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index.
The latest CPI data for food prices in the North Texas region extends through March. These figures showed that food prices rose by a total of 2.1% between March 2020 and March 2021.
That is less than the national average of 3.3% for that period. However, before the pandemic, prices actually fell in north Texas.
“I’m not talking about big declines,” said Cheryl Abbot – Regional Economist at the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. “But the fact that they decreased every month through 2019 was quite surprising. But then came COVID-19. “
This is an indication that several factors, including limited production during the pandemic and rising costs for fuel and transportation, contributed to the change.
Mesquite’s Teia Collier said she noticed the difference in her grocery bill. Collier, a mother of three, often writes about budgeting on her blog.
“The real cost of meat has gone up so much, and then the cost of rice and grains,” said Collier.
Tips for saving money when shopping
Tobie Stanger of Consumer Reports says you can find great bargains on things like beans and frozen fruits and vegetables. If you’re looking for something in particular, look around.
“You can always go online and see what the newsletters are,” said Stanger. “You still have paper newsletters, but you can also find them online and compare them from business to business.”
There are also price comparison apps that can help.
Stanger recommends being open to new brands.
“Think carefully about the uses of the private labels because, according to Consumer Reports, private labels are often as good or better than the brands,” said Stanger. “They can be up to 25% less.”
When shopping for the best deal, pay attention to the unit price.
“If you can’t see it on the store shelf, and if it doesn’t show you unit prices for comparison, you can do it yourself on your cell phone calculator,” said Stanger.
Plan your meals and stick to a list to avoid impulse buying. You can also get savings on discount apps and store loyalty programs.
Stanger also recommends buying in bulk and stocking up on products that are available for sale.
While shopping in bulk can save you money, Collier found it wasn’t the best approach for her family.
“I used to shop like this, but we wasted a lot of food. I threw away a lot of food, otherwise my children would eat everything in one day, ”said Collier.
Instead, Collier said she goes to different stores two or three times a week – and buy what she knows her family will eat.
You times these trips to take advantage of the sale.
“Talk to your store manager,” said Collier. “There’s a Markdown Day. Every business has one, usually two. “
While these strategies take effort, Collier said that being on your budget is well worth the time.
“When you’ve got more change to play with, it’s that extra sense of confidence and security that you can use to feed your family well without sacrificing sacrifices,” said Collier.
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