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Soaring food prices: 5 ways to set a realistic monthly food budget and stick to it

When it comes to your product purchases, sticking to recipes that require in-season vegetables and fruit will save you some serious coin. Picture: Pexels/Kampus Production

When it comes to your product purchases, sticking to recipes that require in-season vegetables and fruit will save you some serious coin. Picture: Pexels/Kampus Production

Published Apr 12, 2022

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Has your grocery bill been making you do a double-take?

You are not to blame. Inflation is. But how can you overcome that? The answer is simple: follow a budget.

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Following a budget can help you put away savings and make sure your spending is on track. While there are expenditures that you cannot easily control, like rent, car or mortgage payments, you can take control of your food spending. Here is a list of things or tips to consider:

Stock up on staples

Make sure your kitchen and pantry are always stocked with certain basics. Doing so will allow you to buy fewer new items each week.

Some of the most useful food to have on hand include eggs, pasta, rice, bread, canned food, frozen vegetables and fruit, onions and potatoes.

Consider buying these products in large quantities, if you have the space, to cut costs over time. Many meals can be made with these ingredients alone.

Compare store prices

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Comparing products from various shops can be a big money saver. The bigger supermarkets increase their prices on certain products, but you often can find that same product for cheaper at a different store.

For example, a supermarket may charge more for fresh produce compared to the local grocery in your neighbourhood. So check prices at various stores to get the best value.

Shop seasonally

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When it comes to your product purchases, sticking to recipes that require in-season vegetables and fruit will save you money. Be mindful when searching through recipes of what you will be able to buy at an affordable price at that time of year.

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Check the kitchen

Plan your shopping list and meals and check what you have in the kitchen before heading out to buy your groceries.

Planning your meals this way will bring your grocery bill down a lot. This will also help minimise buying items in the spur of the moment. If you know what you need, stick to that.

Eat at home

Nothing can compete with a nice home-cooked meal. Keep take-out and junk food dinners to the absolute minimum per month. This can save you a few hundred rand extras.

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