If you’ve ever looked online for ways to cut your food costs, you’ve probably seen “buying in bulk” or “wholesale buy” mentioned as a great way to save money. Atlantic Dominion Distributors, one of Virginia’s premium wholesale grocery distributors, knows all about it and has some tips for how to bulk buy the right way.
It’s easy to get excited any time you see a discount offered for buying several items rather than just one or two. The advantages of bulk buying are that it saves money, reduces the number of trips to the supermarket, and even benefits the environment by cutting down on plastic bags and single-use packaging. While true that buying in bulk can cut your food costs considerably, it’s most successful if you have a shopping strategy to keep you from buying a whole bunch of things you neither need nor enjoy.
Warehouse clubs are what most people think about when thinking about buying in bulk, but before you join one, be realistic about your lifestyle, and whether it’s worth the annual fee. If you intend to shop more than a few times a year, have the storage space, and/ or are planning to make a big purchase, like an HDTV or a computer, warehouse clubs offer considerable savings. But unless you’re feeding a small army every day, it’s wise to combine shopping at Costco, BJ’s, or Sam’s with your local grocery, where you can also buy some items in bulk, and in some cases for less.
Every household is different, so your bulk buying will depend on what your family uses, but there are some basic tips that apply to everyone. Read on to learn about the art of Buying Wholesale Grocery Items.
- Know What’s in Your Pantry. If too many items are hidden behind each other, you’re more liable to accidentally buy it again before you need to. It’s well worth it to spend some time setting up a storage system that makes it easy to see what you have. This makes it easy to see when it’s time to restock.
- Make a Plan. Before you shop (once a month is recommended for most families) decide what you’ll be cooking. Buy food items that can be used in a variety of different dishes. Take into account both holidays when you’ll be doing more cooking as well as any extended periods when you won’t be cooking at home, such as during vacation.
- Understand the Meaning of Price-Per-Unit. Price per unit is what you pay for a specific amount of an item, such as price per pound and price per ounce. It makes sense to assume that you’ll always get the best deal at a warehouse club, but this isn’t always true. Sometimes items have a price per unit that’s not any less than if you bought individually, and might be even more.
Keep track of local store prices for the items you buy frequently so you’ll know if you’re getting a better deal by buying in bulk. Usually, the unit price is on the food package price label or on the upper right or left corner of the shelf it’s on.
- Only Buy What You Need and Use. It may seem obvious, but you’ll only benefit from bulk prices if you purchase what you and your family consume in large quantities. Before putting something in your cart, ask yourself a) if this item gets used up often in your house b) it’s something you’ve used in the past and c} it’s something you plan to use in the future.
- Buy Non-Perishables. Unless your family consumes huge amounts of fruit, you’re planning to feed a big group, or have a big freezer, steer clear of fresh produce, fish, poultry, and anything else that will probably go bad before you use it up. Shop for perishables at smaller stores or farmers’ markets.
After over a century in business, Atlantic Dominion is known among grocery distributors throughout the Southeast for customer services and top-quality inventory. We will always take the time to answer any questions customers might have about what we carry. We look forward to working with you. Click here to find out more.