Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Shopping Lists (The £50 a week budget)

The sole purpose of this exercise is to live well on a budget. 
I'm not going to tell you how to support local producers, buy organic or boycott the supermarket. I'll leave that up to you. 
This same system could be adapted for a farmers' market or local main street. 

I will tell you how I avoid missing things I need, or how I do a supermarket shop without trailing up and down every isle just picking what I fancy at the time.


Start by writing down the different areas in your supermarket in the order you walk through them.

These are the headings I use: 

Fruit and Veg 

Fridge and Bakery 

Tins and Jars

Packets

Other foods

Non Foods

You know the place you shop at regularly, you know where the isles are. 
Adjust it to what you buy.... we don't buy much frozen stuff so I don't do a freezer section. We buy lots of dried pasta, rice, beans, cous cous, etc, so I have a section for that. 


Now add the items you need to buy for the meals you have planned for the coming week. 

 Fruit and Veg 
 Onions 
Lettuce 
Potatoes 

 Fridge and Bakery 
Sausages 
Tortilla wraps 
Cheese 

 Tins and Jars 
Kidney Beans 

 Packets
 Cous cous 
Plain flour 

 Other foods 
Frozen Fish 

Non-foods 

 Next, write down the things that you have noticed need replenished around the house.

Fruit and Veg
Onions
 Lettuce
 Potatoes 
Apples
 Bananas 

 Fridge and Bakery
 Sausages 
Tortilla wraps 
Cheese 
Plain Yogurt 
Margarine 

 Tins and Jars 
Kidney Beans 
Mayonnaise

 Packets
 Cous cous
 Plain flour
 Self-raising flour 
Sultanas 

 Other foods
 Frozen Fish 

 Non-foods
 Toothpaste
 plasters
 Elastic bands

 Now, put your shopping list note-book in an easily accessible place where anyone in the house can add to it over the next day, we keep ours in the kitchen. Chances are that you have forgotten to add something or you will realise something else is getting low. 

 Fruit and Veg
 Onions 
Lettuce 
Potatoes 
Apples 
Bananas

 Fridge and Bakery
 Sausages
 Tortilla wraps 
Cheese 
Plain Yogurt 
Margarine 
Milk 
 Tins and Jars 
Kidney Beans 
Mayonnaise
 Packets
 Cous cous
 Plain flour 
Self-raising flour
 Sultanas 
Yeast
 Other foods 
Frozen Fish 
Ice -cream 

 Non-foods 
Toothpaste 
Plasters 
Elastic bands 
Loo roll 

 Now Your list is ready to go when you are! 


Additional tips 

Stick to the list! 
This is whole point of the exercise, impulse buying is the enemy of the budget. Don't pick up 3 for 2s, or special offers that are advertised unless the item is on the list. Except in the 90% off discount section of the supermarket where we allow ourselves to buy off the list. 

 Timing
 To save money it is really helpful if you can do your weekly shop in the evening, around 7.30pm when the supermarket do their big reductions on Fruit, veg and bakery goods. (big reductions are 90% off) This can make a big difference to the range of foods you will be able to afford. (usually fruit and veg, and bakery items, I steer clear of discount meat or fish as a rule) 

 Remember your freezer 
Before you go shopping, give it a quick tidy and check what space you have, this means, if you do manage to pick up a bargain you know you will have somewhere for it to go.
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