Solutions & Substitutions by Reena: Secrets of the Grocery Store


By Reena Nerbas

Grocery Store Secrets That You Need To Know

Shopping for veggies1. Fresh fruits and colourful veggies are placed at the front of the store. Studies show that when consumers fill their carts with healthy goodness, they feel less guilty about purchasing pre-packaged, less healthy food.

2. Fresh vegetables are sprayed with water to make them glisten. The water also adds weight to veggies and makes them rot faster, before you put them into your cart, shake off excess water.

3. Ready-to-eat food costs more. Foods such as pre-grated cheese costs 30-60% more than grating it yourself. Wash and rip your lettuce at home. Wash and slice veggies and fruit at home. Save money by hand choosing loose produce such as tomatoes, peppers, oranges, kiwi etc. instead of pre-bagged produce.

4. Over the past few years, shopping carts nearly doubled in size and consumers are spending about 19% more to fill the cart.

5. The beat of music in supermarkets is often slower than our own heartbeat. An easy listening tempo causes us to move slower, and take our time. Consider wearing headphones with an upbeat tempo.

6. Know your prices, because bulk foods are sometimes sold at higher prices than packaged foods.

7. If you look at the packaging on fresh fish, you might find the words “Previously Frozen” which means it was frozen and then thawed. Frozen grocery store fish is cheaper and often fresher than fresh grocery store fish.

8. The most expensive grocery items are placed at eye level. Look higher or lower on shelves for better deals. The exception to this: items like sugary cereal which is displayed on lower shelves to grab the attention of children.

9. Ever notice that grocery stores have no clocks and few windows? Most windows are situated near the check-out isle. Stores are banking on the hope that you will lose track of time and purchase more.

10. Shelf ends appear to offer sales or special promotions, but the truth is that manufacturers pay big bucks for end of aisle position and the savings may be non-existent.

11. Staple or power items such as milk, eggs and butter are usually spread around the store perimeter and located at the back or sides of the store, causing you to walk through the entire store to pick-up items. Stick to your list and avoid impulsively adding merchandise to the cart.

12. Some stores now have TV’s at the checkout. This causes you to view store ads and distracts you from your purchases.

13. Studies show that Wednesday is the best day of the week to shop. Less people in the store and many retailers begin sales mid-week. Research shows that Saturday consumers purchase more when surrounded by crowds of people.

14. Stores pair items such as: Salsa and taco chips, dip and veggies, honey and tea etc. While consumers might look at this as a nice convenience, it actually gives you the idea to purchase two items instead of one.

15. Avoid shopping when you’re hungry.

Looking to the future: Underneath the floors of supermarkets around the world, subtle speedbumps are being installed. These speedbumps cause consumers to slow down without even realizing it and stopping to browse shelves.

Note: Every user assumes all risks of injury or damage resulting from the implementation of any suggestions in this column. Test all products on an inconspicuous area first.

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