June 14, 2024
How to save at the grocery store and beat inflation

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — As many people continue to grapple with high grocery prices, the country waits with baited breathe to see if any progress has been made toward inflation.

Wednesday, June 12, the Federal Reserve is set to announce new data around inflation. If positive, it could mean interest rates get cut. However, even if the trend appears to be favorable, economists tell ABC News there likely will not be any rate cuts until September at the earliest.

While inflation has cooled down since peaking in 2022, families continue to see high prices at the grocery store. The latest Household Pulse Survey from the U.S. Census Bureau shows the average U.S. household still spends more than $1,000 a month on groceries.

Here is a monthly breakdown of how much a family of four would spend on groceries a month, according to the job search website Zippia:

Sarah Crawford, a registered dietician with E-meals, told ABC24 prices really began increasing following the start of the pandemic.

“In the last few years, it’s about a 25% increase,” Crawford said.

The main culprit behind those larger price tags according to Crawford have been the prices of meat and produce. The price for a pound of ground beef went up more than 31% since 2020, according to Statista.

“It really has been across the board,” Crawford said. “But when you’re spending $200 on groceries a week, that’s $50. That’s a big deal for a week to week basis.”

To combat these prices, Crawford suggests always heading into the grocery store with a plan about what you are going to buy, keeping your wallet in mind. One of the most cost effective substitutions, according to the dietician, includes opting to buy frozen vegetables instead of fresh produce.

“You still get a lot of your great nutrition, but you’re maybe not spending as much as fresh vegetables and fruits,” said Crawford.

Big savings can also be found in changing the protein you consume from meat to beans. When comparing the cost of ground beef, beans alone could save you close to $4 a pound according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“The biggest cost is always going to be the meat on the plate, and it’s usually the star of the dinner plate, but there is some great things you can do with having meatless meals that will also save you money, while also getting protein from things like beans is a great alternative,” said Crawford.

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