More and more people are finding “salvage” grocery stores a way to save big on grocery staples. As a big fan of my local store in NC, I can tell you that the savings can be huge.
While they do not look like typical grocery stores, neither do their prices. While it may not be the place to go to pick up specific items on your shopping list, it can be a fabulous treasure hunt for items you use every day.
I like to stop in my local store at least once a week to see what they have. Some of my best finds have been, Barilla plus pasta for .50 a box, canned beets, peas, corn, string beans and diced tomatoes for .25 a can, IAMS 4lb bags of dog food for $2 a bag, .5 liter bottles of Perrier for .25 each, Kelloggs Smart Start cereal for $1 a box, Ken’s salad dressings for .25 a bottle, 10lb red potatoes for $2.
The packaging is most often a little dented or crinkled but the food is sealed and the price is certainly right. If you see a real deal, you need to take advantage of it. Since these are closeouts and one time purchases, you may not find that deal next time you drop in.
One important thing to remember is that just because you are in a salvage store, everything is not automatically cheaper. I have found paper products, cleaning supplies and some frozen foods to be cheaper at my local Walmart.
While these stores don’t advertise and traffic is mostly word of mouth, you can probably track down at least a couple of stores in your area. There are now hundreds of salvage grocery stores across the United States. I have gone online and typed “salvage grocer” into my favorite search engine to find stores near my children’s houses. They are sometimes even listed in the yellow pages. For starters, this link will get you to a statewide directory: http://andersonscountrymarket.net/directory
I do not consider it to be a complete directory as my two favorite stores are not on it. If you find that you don’t live near one, remember to check out your local grocers clearance section which is usually located in the back of the store or look for closeout labels on the grocery shelves.
In addition to canned goods there are deals on organic vegetables, eggs, dairy, frozen foods meats, dog treats, paper products, over the counter medications, shampoos, soaps detergents, snack foods even candy. In short anything you would find at your neighborhood grocer can usually be found there.
When it comes to expired products, “You can probably buy it and use it safely past those expiration dates. If it’s something that requires refrigeration, you may want to exercise more caution before you buy and consume something like that,” said Susan Parachini, with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. She said dates placed by manufacturers don’t imply when something is safe to eat but rather when the quality is best.
Groceries eat up a hefty percentage of American families’ budgets. A weekly trip to the salvage grocer can greatly stretch that budget with prices well below 50% off grocery store pricing. And now that I am using my Loyalty program card I save another 25% on the total price at the checkout. Anyone who has not looked into this is losing up to $170 a month in purchasing power! It is an incredible program and saves you money on what YOU buy everyday.
Anyone looking for additional (and sometimes very creative) tips and strategies for saving money on just about everything you buy is welcome to visit my blog: http://lil-fab4less.blogspot.com