Are you wondering how to beat high food prices and still eat well? If so, you are not alone. Anyone whose been grocery shopping lately has noticed the major sticker shocks when it comes to the price of produce. The sky rocketing price of our fruits and vegetables has pushed inflation up to 1.6 per cent in December 2015. The interesting thing is, we live in a place where we can and do grow all kinds of food year-round and yet here we are, importing it, and paying a fortune for it.
According to new Stat’s Canada reports the price of fruit and veggies are up more than 13 per cent since last year and it’s eating into budgets big time. We know, we see the prices of cauliflower and lettuce. So what can we do to stay on budget? Here are some tips:
- Look for a frozen or canned alternative (same nutritional value and half the cost)
- Buy fresh vegetables in season (carrots, broccoli, potatoes)
- Stick to the old fruit staples (bananas, apples, oranges)
- Substitute meat dinners a couple times a week for things like beans and lentils
- Stretch the meats you do buy by making soups and stews
Making a list ahead of time and pre-planning what you’re shopping for will keep you on track at the grocery store, and also reduce your food waste at home (money in the garbage). The typical household wastes about $25 a week or $1300 a year so don’t be typical! Another great way to save money in times like these is to grow as many of your own foods as possible. We are extremely lucky to live in the climate that we do – depending on how much room we have, we can grow many foods ourselves and eat fresh every day! Offer to help your neighbors harvest their fruit trees and share in the fruits of your labours. Get the kids involved! Let them help you choose seeds and plant them, and perhaps help with making some raised beds in your yard for vegetables. When everything is in abundance (spring and summer months), learn how to can and jar your bounty for the winter. You will be happy you did and so will your wallet.