I like reading blogs that teach me a thing or two about how to stretch a buck. I even subscribe to the daily mailings of one such blog, and read the entire e-mail religiously. I love reading about how I can repurpose my items that would otherwise collect dust, use the last of my milk up before (or even after) it's starting to turn, and get new ideas for saving money on my utilities. However, I'm thinking about stopping. Specifically, I'm thinking about stopping reading the ones about how to save money on groceries. Why?
They aren't realistic.
Admittedly, most of these blogs come out of the US, and for where they are the prices they're writing about may be reasonable. For me however, they're not. For example, I recently took the unit prices from the recipes of one blog, and decided to compare them with my trip to the grocery store today:
2L organic milk - $1.28
1 dozen organic eggs - $0.90
1 lb butter - $0.80
2L regular milk - $2.89
1 dozen regular eggs - $2.35
1 lb butter - $3.99 (On Sale)
This is not from a high end grocery store, it's from an average one. These are not top dollar prices, in fact they're store brand. These aren't organic items, they're regular ones. If you want to go organic the price for the milk hits $5-6, and about the same for the eggs. I'm scared to look at the price of organic butter. Don't even get me started on meat and vegetables, because they're worse than the staple prices.
The suggestion that going to the farmer's market will lower my grocery bill is laughable. If anything, it's more expensive than the store. I go for certain things so that I can support the local farmers, but $5 for a dozen eggs hurts my wallet. I would love to go 100% local, but it just isn't realistic. Ditto for organic. We don't have clearance stores and I've never seen a double or triple coupon day (ever, in my life). Most of the coupons I've come across have "cannot be combined with other offers" written on the bottom of them, and they are a pittance off of pre-made foods that I don't use.
So to all those bloggers out there who come up with solid meat and potato meals for under $5... good on you. To those bloggers/commenters who look down their noses at those of us that can't meet your arbitrary dollar figures.... bite me.