Saving with 6abc: Finding the best food prices

(Saving with 6abc - Amy Buckman)

May 9, 2011 10:12:41 AM PDT
If you've been shopping at a local supermarket, you're probably not getting the best value for your grocery dollar.

That's according to a recent study by the Delaware Valley Consumer's Checkbook, which compared prices for a shopping cart of 151 items that many typical families buy.

Turns out the best deals aren't at a supermarket at all.

"In terms of price, Walmart was the winner," explains Robert Krughoff, President of "It was about 20% less expensive than Acme, for example, for our full market-basket of items."

Redner's also had good prices. Krughoff says they were about 17% lower than Acme -- which was used for comparison, since it's the area's biggest chain.

"Interestingly, though, Checkbook found that Walmart and Redners, which had the lowest prices, were among the lowest in terms of customer ratings in terms of the quality of their produce, overall quality of service, etc.," Krughoff adds.

Wegman's prices were about 11% cheaper than Acme's -- but unlike Walmart and Redner's -- Wegman's also got good marks for service and quality.

Krughoff says, "That 11% difference is worth about $800 a year to a family that spends about $150 a week at the supermarket."

Checkbook also found that Costco offered good prices and high quality on fresh meat -- though you need to buy large quantities there to get the deals.

And Target -- a relatively new player in the grocery game -- also offered good prices, though selections were limited.

Finally, Checkbook also found that by buying store brands, instead of name brands, shoppers could save an additional five to eight percent.

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