We’re all trying to save money right now, whether that’s by tightening up on unnecessary spending or making the most of coupons and offers.
More than half of people in the UK have been buying less food over the past two weeks to combat rising costs, which are estimated to have jumped almost 15% in the last year alone.
Before you start cutting items from your shopping list, though, it may be worth looking at what ends up in the bin.
An estimated half a million Brits throw food away every single day, with the average family wasting over £800 a year on groceries they forget to eat or which go bad before they get a chance.
Shopping smarter is the first step, and it’s important to ensure what you buy is as fresh (and long-lasting) as possible.
Since many supermarkets have done away with sell-by dates, it’s not always easy to do this, but Gemma Baird – aka Money Mum – has shared her top tips to help.
Fruit and veg
Gemma tells The Sun that Tesco now uses three-figure codes to show the shelf life of fruit and veg, taking the guesswork out of getting the most for your money.
Rather than squishing and sniffing fresh produce, check the front of the packet fora letter followed by two numbers, such as H24.
The letter corresponds to the month – so January is A, February is B, March is C and so on – while the number is the day. Today, August 25, for example would be H25.
Now you’ll know just how long you have left to use up your buys.
It makes sense to move to generic brands when you’re trying to save cash. You often don’t need to compromise on quality either, as branded and budget foodstuffs are often made in the same factories with the same ingredients.
An eight-digit product license code (usually printed beside the sell-by date) shows where a product was made, and you can spot the same ones on differently-priced items from painkillers to pasta.
If an expensive product has the same PL code as its cheaper counterpart, it’s likely a purse-friendly switch you’ll barely notice.
British Lion eggs all have a logo stamped onto the shell to show the hens that laid them have been vaccinated against salmonella.
There’s also a best before date and a code printed underneath – a number between zero and three – revealing the way each egg is farmed.
A zero means is organic, a one means free range, a two refers to barn hens and three is caged.
Double check the eggs you’re buying are the quality you’d expect for the price you pay, as well as ensuring you know the use-by date so none go to waste.
Those who love snagging savings by using their Tesco Clubcard can make sure they don’t miss out on deals with a handy tip.
When scouring the aisles, if you come across a Clubcard price card, you should see a six-digit number underneath the original price.
This shows the date the deal will end (for example, 250823) so you never miss out on a bargain and know if it’s worth stocking up pronto.
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