Which groceries are cheapest?

Food inflation is threatening food security globally and, although South Africa has been more fortunate than many nations, we still need to be savvy shoppers to get our money’s worth.

I chatted to Pick n Pay to find out where some real savings can be found and this is what it advised.

If you’re keen on fish and chicken, they can be bought fresh or frozen, but chicken is generally cheaper as it’s more easily farmed and produced than fish, which is subject to availability outside its natural environment.

When it comes to chicken, individual frozen portions (known as “IQF”) are cheapest to buy. When it comes to fish, baby hake sold loose is generally the cheapest fish to buy.

On the fresh side, fresh chicken braai packs vary from about R29,99 to R34,99 per kilo off-promotion, while fish in retail packs retails at about R58,73 to R82 per kilo, depending on the type of fish.

When it comes to vegetables, fresh veg are cheaper than frozen as the manufacturing process is obviously more complicated when it comes to freezing.

Looking at fruit — loose or pre-packed — prices will depend on the size of the fruit. There’s a premium on larger fruit because it’s usually an export product. There’s obviously extra labour when it comes to pre-packaged fruit and this ultimately affects price, though.

Looking at starch, maize is cheaper than wheat. Brown bread flour is slightly cheaper than white bread flour and in-store baked bread is cheaper than government bread.

Pick n Pay advises customers to look out for price promotions and be sure to compare the advertised price with other brands available on the shelf. If you haven’t seen your local newspaper, remember that produce and price adverts are available in-store.

Read more news, blogs, tips and Q&As in our Smart Money section. Post questions on the site for independent and researched information

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