I've been hesitant to cut back on the weekly shopping too much in case it runs
our stockpile down (usually buy any specials that might be regular stockpile
items) - but we do need to try and cut it back our budget some more - any ideas
about how to work stockpile maintainence/specials buying in with the weekly
I appreciate that different cities and countries provide different shopping opportunities. For instance, we don't have Aldi in Adelaide and we don't have coupons in Australia. I have always found the Woolworths/Coles duopoly frustrating as I know they keep prices high and there is little difference between them on price. Fortunately, Adelaide has Foodland, which provides a great alternative to the "big two".
The specifics of my situation are as follows:
- Family of six, with children aged 15, 12, 10 and 6.
- I shop weekly.
- All toiletries (apart from makeup) and cleaning products are included in the weekly shop
- A budget of $200 ($135 US), which I often go over:-(.
- All children and hubby take lunches to school/work
- We get takeaway or eat out as a family about once every 2 months. I buy coffee out about once a week and usually buy sushi for my lunch on Friday when I do my shopping. Hubby buys coffee sometimes too. These items are not covered by our $200 per week.
- The only freezer space I have is the small freezer above my fridge. The house we are renting has very limited pantry space too.
- Sadly, we don't have a vegetable garden anymore, due to our recent interstate move. Once we buy a home I'll start one up again.
Here is my plan for building a stockpile on a budget.
1. Think about your budget
If you are on a bare-bones food budget there may be very little room to buy extras for a stockpile. Thus if you want to build a stockpile you may have to allocate extra funds to do so. However, as I discovered when I took my calculator shopping, I could shop for less than I usually do, just by organising myself better.
2. Create a menu plan that will come under budget
In order to create a stockpile without going over budget, your basic menu plan for the week has to come under budget. To create such a menu plan you need to shop at home first, using up existing supplies, and study grocery store catalogues so you know what will be on sale. Also, think about which fruits and vegetables are in season in your area, as they will be less expensive and will have travelled less.
3. Think about which items you are running out of, and add them to your list
If you can get some of these items in bulk or on sale, that's great.
4. Plan to Stockpile
Using sale catalogues and your existing supplies as a guide, plan just a few items that you can buy in bulk or buy extra of, to add to your stockpile, or to begin a stockpile if you don't already have one. Don't get carried away; you still want to stay within your budget.
5. Take your calculator shopping
I cannot emphasis enough the advantages of doing this. If you hit your limit, start putting things back on the shelves, beginning with the least important ones.
6. Rotate Your Supplies
There is no point storing lots of food if you allow it to spoil. So keep eating and rotating the supplies you have.
While I am not a Mormon, they are worth mentioning as they are experts on food storage. Members of the LDS (Latter Day Saints) church are encouraged to store at least a 3 month supply of food and water for all family members. To find out more about Family Home Storage, click this link. If you Google "LDS food storage" you will find lots of other links on this topic.
My next post will be this week's menu.
Have you have any tips on building a food stockpile? If so, please leave a comment.