September 06 Grocery Challenge

Hello everyone :)

Another new month is about to start, for most of us, while some of you are already well into things.

As always this challenge is to reduce your own grocery budget to levels that you will be pleased with, not forgetting that we always recommend that you stay inside your own comfort levels and take things gently one step at a time.

If you are new to the challenge I have quoted the advice from Galtizz below which will help you get started.

Please post into this thread for help and advice and support at any time. Good luck to everyone taking part! :)

Galtizz wrote:
I have said this before, but for all the newbies to the challenge;

For the first month I took a guess at the budget but I really had no idea how much I was spending.

I found the best thing is to have a guess the first month but SAVE ALL OF YOUR RECEIPTS (and yes, that does include the ones from the local shop when you run out of milk ), then at the end of the month add them all up and have a look if you were on budget, if not, it doesn't matter because your budget was a guess. For the next month you can use the total of your receipts and take a bit off to get a realistic budget, just shave off as much as you think you can, it could be £1 a week or £20 a week.

If you are currently spending £200 a month don't suddenly drop it to £100 - you'll never do it but if you cut £20 a month off for a few months you'll get there eventually without feeling you're missing out on anything.

You might think you've done everything you can in the first month but someone always comes up with a new idea and, if you try it you often find you save a bit more (unless you are SarahSaver who is an expert at this and could only save more if she turned her back garden into a paddy field and lived on rice ) In the first month I thought, I'm planning meals, I couldn't possibly save any more, but then I started double cooking and freezing, and making soup instead of buying it in tins.

I've been doing this since Feb but only saved ALL of my receipts last month, it has given me a much better idea of where it is all going. Budget for next month is £80 for 2 of us, I'll start on 30/4. I could probably save more, by eating different foods but I can afford to live on £80, I have saved a lot of money since Feb. and I don't waste food or money any more. So I'm happy with my budget.



  • comping_cat
    comping_cat Posts: 24,006
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker Mortgage-free Glee!
    Thanks Pink, ive been really slack with the challenge the last few months, so will be starting again this month. Going to attempt to spend under £150 for the 3 of us.
  • WelshWoofer
    WelshWoofer Posts: 5,076 Forumite
    I'm in - 100 squideroonies to spend on all food, cleaning bits, toiletries and dog stuff.
    I'll start on 1st September as I'm away working until August 31st and food is all paid for by work.
    Didn't do too badly last month - still have to tot it all up but I thinkit was around 90 (out of a budget of 100).
    Good luck to all!
  • ems_2-2
    ems_2-2 Posts: 19 Forumite
    I've tried this before but somehow it's all gone pear shaped.
    Have majorly overspent this summer:rolleyes:
    But September is back to school and work.
    This month I WILL
    1) take my partner's credit card away and go back to shopping myself
    2) meal plan
    3) work out a realistic budget for food for 2 adults and 4 kids ( 1 vegi so have to cook separate meals for her)

    Haven't got a clue how much we spend on food at the mo - at least £400 so it's head out the sand time.
    Need to save up cos we're going away in October but at the mo have no money!! Holiday booked and paid for in Tesco vouchers

    Have also been living out the freezer and store cupboards for last couple of weeks so will need to stock up again

    Good luck every one
  • hi, i am new to this but to give you an idea in july i spent over £800 at supermarkets , including all cleaning, toiletries and some cash back. Hence in debt and had my light bulb moment! I was buying huge amounts of organic and fair trade everything and living a dream. Last month, I spent £319, just by meal planning, being aware and no ridiculous trips to shop for luxuries. No cashback. WE are 2 adults and 2 children. I am attempting to keep to £300 again this month. It seems a lot but better then nearly £900!!

    Motivation needed so glad i found this forum!
  • shell2001
    shell2001 Posts: 1,817 Forumite
    I am in on this one as its the last area we can really make cutbacks. My usual budget is 350 for the month includes food, cleaning stuff (now have discovered stardrops and white vinegar this should help), toiletries and nappies and wipes. Gonna crack on with potty training when we get back from hols. We are away for first 2 weeks of sept so gives me 175 for rest of month. Have done my meal plan just gonna pop on tesco site and price it up. Fingers crossed!!
  • Peem
    Peem Posts: 645 Forumite
    I'm on for this.

    £300 for me, DH and 2 kids and any other waifs and strays who happen to be around at meal times.

    I'm hoping you lot will keep me in line.
    "You can't get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." - C.S. Lewis
  • CAFCGirl
    CAFCGirl Posts: 9,122
    Photogenic Name Dropper First Anniversary First Post
    Excellent to have this as a sticky.

    Jumping on for the very first time myself.
    Am hoping to go for £75 for just lil ol' me. Including food, household items, toiletries and food/sawdust for the rabbit! Although I'm sure its the housemates turn this month!

    Have a fair amount of items in cupboards but only small fridge and freezer so difficult to stock up and bulk buy.

    Biggest spend is on luxury food items so need to get that down, cut down on cakes, soft drinks, convenience foods!

    May need a lot of encouragement and tips, hope someone can help :S xx
    Manifesting Abundance in 2023
    Fashion On The Ration 2023 36/66
  • Nix143
    Nix143 Posts: 1,130 Forumite
    Hi guys

    Well, I have to do this - things have suddenly gone ker-plunk with my finances and everything is hitting home this month. I don't get paid until the 10th (but it will be the 8th as that's a Sunday) but want to start the September grocery challenge

    Couple of questions
    1. Does it make sense to start at the beginning of a calendar month or your salaried month? I'm planning on doing my major shop the weekend I get paid
    2. I have no idea what I have spent on groceries previously and no idea of what a reasonable figure would be - there is me and my 12 year old son (and an occasional visitor :D) - what figure do you guys think is good for my first month? Unfortunately I cant afford to just spend as normal (I dread to think how much I normally spend on food etc)

    Thanks for the help, don't you just love us newbies! :)
    Comps £2016 in 2016 - 1 wins = £530 26.2%
    SEALED POT CHALLENGE MEMBER No. 428 2015 - £210.93

  • i'm new to and its great to be here dealing with it!!! good luck. Do you do a meal plan and a shopping list?
  • Sarahsaver
    Sarahsaver Posts: 8,390 Forumite
    LOL :) My back garden is quite waterlogged from all the rain. Paddy field anyone :rolleyes:
    Seriously, I am varying the weekly budget between £20 and £30, although this week I had £8 left from the £20 he he he! I think its bcos mum came up and shes a veggie, so the food we had was cheeeeeep!
    It is £30 every other week when we have an organic veg box.
    Egg and chips tonight;)
    Member no.1 of the 'I'm not in a clique' group :rotfl:
    I have done reading too!
    To avoid all evil, to do good,
    to purify the mind- that is the
    teaching of the Buddhas.
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