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Is your food spending normal?
January 24, 2012 3:16 PM   Subscribe

Is Your Food Spending Normal? This interactive calculator from Mother Jones compares your spending with others in your location and income bracket.
posted by desjardins (82 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite

 
compares your spending with others in your location*

* In some cities, in the USA only.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 3:18 PM on January 24, 2012 [3 favorites]


Holy shit I've gotta start making my own lunches.
posted by Mister Fabulous at 3:22 PM on January 24, 2012 [8 favorites]


What if all I have for lunch is Cheddar Combos from the vending machine and a warm Cherry Coke?
posted by shakespeherian at 3:23 PM on January 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


Ricochet, the city data isn't super relevant, though obviously it's all US data. I played around a little and it doesn't seem to vary enough to matter.

The verdict for me: Canadian groceries prices are high, and I need to having dinners with friends.
posted by Phire at 3:26 PM on January 24, 2012


Ha! Like I even know hoe much i'm spending on food!

What?
posted by Artw at 3:26 PM on January 24, 2012 [6 favorites]


Huh, wow I spend like ten thousand a year on food and I consider myself pretty thrifty. Granted I cook for more than one person I'm an obnoxious food snob
posted by The Whelk at 3:29 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


I note that it uses credit card data only--I wonder how this thing is affected (up or down?) by not including spending habits of people who use only cash (like a lot of the people trying to get out of debt, people who only use fringe banking, paycheck-to-paycheck people, etc.)?

That said--cool!
posted by resurrexit at 3:30 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


No, its not normal. In fact, I come in at about 3x what they call 'liberal'

Not sure what the point is. Its the problem with only using one data point and then making assumptions about a budget.

I don't want to budget on food. Its our luxury. We don't own a car. We spend very little on housing. The budget is fine.
posted by vacapinta at 3:34 PM on January 24, 2012 [4 favorites]


According to this I spend way more on food then normal people.
posted by cell divide at 3:34 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


So... THIS is why I'm fat. I see.
posted by symbioid at 3:34 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Jesus what does the average person survive on? Cardboard boxes and cat farts?
posted by 2bucksplus at 3:36 PM on January 24, 2012 [22 favorites]


So, what's a proper ratio of booze/food? Ya know - just... curious.
posted by symbioid at 3:36 PM on January 24, 2012


This is interesting. Also, terrible data.

For instance, according to this calculator, I spend twice as much on dining out than comparable households. But the data source is Citigroup credit card bills, and I almost always pay cash when I eat out, so as far as they know, I spend close to $0 on dining out. If I spent, say, $5K a year and I did pay with credit cards, but I have two credit cards; Wells Fargo and Citibank, then I spent $2.5K a year as far as they know. It's a terrible source of bias, because there's no way to overestimate the expenditure from a limited set of data, only to underestimate it. So the numbers are unavoidably low, I would assume.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has actual useful, representative data, to your heart's content. With very detailed breakdowns! Statistics Canada has actual representative data, but, bless their hearts, it's not nearly as useful.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 3:36 PM on January 24, 2012 [8 favorites]


Huh, wow I spend like ten thousand a year on food and I consider myself pretty thrifty. Granted I cook for more than one person I'm an obnoxious food snob

Ditto. I'm cooking for a family of 5. And pet food is included in my food budget.*

I have no idea how I'm supposed to use their numbers for comparison. According to their charts, I'm spending more than the koo-koo super rich. That doesn't make any sense.

----
*Not for the family of 5. For Boutros Boutros-Whiskers!
posted by mazola at 3:36 PM on January 24, 2012 [5 favorites]


Basically we are all one huge great Portlandia sketch.
posted by Artw at 3:37 PM on January 24, 2012 [13 favorites]


Yeah the market doesn't take credit cards and I pay in cash when eating out....
posted by The Whelk at 3:37 PM on January 24, 2012


The data is completely useless if they aren't going to segregate by family size. We could eat Ramen noodles 7 days a week but with two teenagers in the house, we'd still spend more than a single person.
posted by COD at 3:39 PM on January 24, 2012 [9 favorites]


Not that useful.
posted by R. Mutt at 3:39 PM on January 24, 2012


Also by week is hard, as my grocery habits are entirely dependant on my desire to go out again vs my tolerance for tarting up leftovers.
posted by The Whelk at 3:41 PM on January 24, 2012


I suspect I come in at 'normal', though all these instant noodles are probably calcifying my insides to a nice, goldeny sheen.

Jesus what does the average person survive on? Cardboard boxes and cat farts?

Cardboard, no, but my cat just rips one in my face when I'm sleeping, so it's not like I've got a choice here.
posted by zennish at 3:42 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


COD - there is a section for household size in the results.

I knew I spent a lot on food and I didn't think this was that far off, but apparently it's way off for everyone.
posted by desjardins at 3:43 PM on January 24, 2012


I can't even load the page, but based on the response it sounds like that may be a good thing.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 3:46 PM on January 24, 2012


Ah, I missed that chart the first time. Although I would like to meet the family of 4 in the DC DC eating 3 meals a day for $383 month. They might just be living on Ramen noodles.
posted by COD at 3:47 PM on January 24, 2012


According to the calculator, I turned out moderate instead of low-cost and I spend more on dining out than I expected. Time to retool my weekly menus.
posted by dragonplayer at 3:49 PM on January 24, 2012


FWIW, the (US) Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates the average "consumer unit" (2.5 people) spent $6129 for food in 2010.
posted by desjardins at 3:51 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Which is not far off from what the link says.
posted by desjardins at 3:51 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Where are you all getting data about your food expenses to use in this form? I thought I was going to fill in some demographics and it was going to guess how much I might be spending, but it seems to expect me to know already.
posted by Mars Saxman at 3:52 PM on January 24, 2012


It's completely unclear to me whether this is showing individual or household data. While the article says you can enter your data "by household or as an individual, your choice", it looks like the output is all on the basis of individuals. This would make sense, as it seems to jibe pretty well with the BLS individual numbers.

It's confusing, though, because (I think) even the numbers for the categories with "household" in the title are giving data on the basis of individuals.
posted by mr_roboto at 3:55 PM on January 24, 2012


Where are you all getting data about your food expenses to use in this form? I thought I was going to fill in some demographics and it was going to guess how much I might be spending, but it seems to expect me to know already.

I know, I had to guess like hell about what the food I eat everyday even costs. If anything I lowballed it and thought about weeks where I did nothing extraordinary (like treat friends to dinner or drinks).

(#firstworldproblems)
posted by 2bucksplus at 3:58 PM on January 24, 2012


I really could have fleshed this post out, sorry. This USDA report (PDF, pg. 4) indicates that low-income* households spend about $5000/year and high income** households spend about $10,000/year. That's more in line with what we spend.

* $10-$15K
** $70K+

posted by desjardins at 3:59 PM on January 24, 2012


mr_roboto - the BLS data is based on "units" of 2.5 people
posted by desjardins at 4:00 PM on January 24, 2012


I think I spend as much a month on Starbucks as the typical person does on food. That's made me rethink my habits...
posted by Yowser at 4:10 PM on January 24, 2012


I guessed my Starbucks habit to be $40 a month, which I'm fairly certain is a lowball. I also buy good fresh groceries. On the upside, I almost never drink, so there's that.
posted by Phire at 4:19 PM on January 24, 2012


I spend a LOT more than average on food... I'm giving myself a bit of a pass since I'm gluten intolerant, and all that shit costs, like, 2 to 3 times as much as regular stuff. (A box of 24 oreo-style cookies is $7. I mean, really.)
posted by sugarpumpkin at 4:26 PM on January 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


(A box of 24 oreo-style cookies is $7. I mean, really.)

Holy shit, where do you shop/live? I only buy cookies when they're on sale, but I think Newman O's (all kinds, including gluten free) are like $4.50 here (Minneapolis).
posted by hoyland at 4:28 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


I know I shouldn't because this probably isn't even that accurate necessarily, but holy crap I feel so validated after the last go-round about household grocery costs with smug sanctimonious proclamations made by fellow Mefites about how there's a magical set cutoff number beyond which "you must be shopping exclusively at Whole Foods" for overpriced cachet junk. Totally not true in my experience because the city you live in and the quality of the markets you're exposed to means everything, and this validates that 100%. When I put in what I spent in the Northeast cities I lived in, with excellent supermarkets and more than one competitive one and therefore cutthroat coupon wars and sales, etc. and one of the best farmers markets in the country for its time, I get to put in a much lower number than I do in this food desert-y, grocery-monopolistic, extremely high sales taxed state. But for both I end up doing really well relative to my neighbors, especially given my income bracket. Feeling much better, even though I already knew this and argued the point last time (to little avail save some nice MeMail commiseration).
posted by ifjuly at 4:28 PM on January 24, 2012


I've been an enthusiastic user of Mint.com for a while now, and when I was going over my expenses from last year, I was completely horrified and humiliated by how much I spent on fast food/convenience food because I've been so bogged down with my work schedule and I've gotten completely disconnected from mindfulness. It's okay, and part of a natural cycle of alertness and chaos, but—

I could have had a damn Poly Evolver, but instead I had eighty-five meals at McDonalds and lots of ones at the local hole in the wall where I eat because I'm distracted and lazy and the beautiful fat woman with too many rings behind the counter calls me "babydoll." Hell, I could have had a nice old F150, or ten days in Iceland, or...well, never mind. Suffice it to say I've taken delicious peanut butter and jam sandwiches on my own homemade bread to work all month.

I can only imagine what it all would have cost if I cared for fancy coffee or booze.

Sheeesh. It's just hard to stay awake sometimes, particularly when you've got too much on your plate, so to speak.
posted by sonascope at 4:34 PM on January 24, 2012 [5 favorites]


Man if I'm going to low bid it isn't going to be for food. I am enjoying wagyu roast beef, roasted new potatos dusted with a good parmigiana and some steamed broccoli with olive oil and garlic. I'll save some money by not paying for a gym or something.
posted by Ad hominem at 4:36 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Just what I need, another Mother nagging me to save more.
posted by jonmc at 4:40 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Americans have no fucking idea how expensive groceries can be until they live in Canada.

I love this country, my same-sex marriage is all kinds of awesome, but FUCK do I miss cheap groceries.

$4.89 for a damn bag of Ruffles today.
posted by ethnomethodologist at 4:42 PM on January 24, 2012


$4.89 for a damn bag of Ruffles today.

Really? Did they throw in a blowjob?
posted by jonmc at 4:42 PM on January 24, 2012


It doesn't ask how many people you are feeding?

Superfail.
posted by DU at 4:43 PM on January 24, 2012


Holy christ how am I not walking around wearing nothing but a barrel with suspenders?
posted by cmoj at 4:46 PM on January 24, 2012 [3 favorites]


$4.89 for a damn bag of Ruffles today.

Really? Did they throw in a blowjob?


That's Pringles.
posted by maryr at 4:50 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


I... wow. It's time to rethink this.

Monday: Beans and Rice
Tuesday: Noodles and butter.
Wednesday: Beans and butter.
Thursday: Noodles and rice.
Friday: Rice and butter.
Saturday: A sausage.
Sunday: A slice of cheese.
posted by sonic meat machine at 4:53 PM on January 24, 2012


This is great for a single person, but not for a household. And averaging across families of different sizes (see comments) is, frankly, um, dumb. Sorry, but I don't find this of any use at all, even for single people. Unless you want to flagellate yourself about how much you spend on booze.
posted by zomg at 4:57 PM on January 24, 2012


What kind of bean withthe beans and butter. That sounds pretty good. You should try egg noodles and a packet of turkey gravy. My mom made that three times a week, really hits the spot sometims
posted by Ad hominem at 4:57 PM on January 24, 2012


ethnomethodologist, I think prices are ridiculously high out west. I live in Toronto, but was in Calgary on business this summer. I had a fridge and a microwave in my room, so I stocked up breakfast and lunch food by getting veggies, tortillas, sandwich meat, plain Astro yogurt, etc. at the Safeway within walking distance of my downtown hotel (it was a round trip of 7 km, which was fine for exercise, but not quite what I'm used to around here.)

The special member price for a tub of yogurt was $4, but the list price was $4.50. I usually pay about 2 bucks for the same yogurt (and I'm sure Americans will shortly chime in with a price that will make me cry). Everything else was proportionately OMFG-priced as well.

(I just checked the Safeway flyer. This week, you can get two tubs of Astro Balkan for $6 -- if you're a club member. Oy.)
posted by maudlin at 5:01 PM on January 24, 2012


Do you have any idea how much you spend on food? A few of us here at Mother Jones tracked our habits and were surprised (and appalled) to see the damage.

Appalled? Why? Food is probably the least damaging way you can spend your income. You can't engage in the American obsession with hyper-thriftiness and then bitch about Wal-Mart.
posted by phooky at 5:02 PM on January 24, 2012 [4 favorites]


Also can I say that Boutros-boutros Whiskers is a really great name for a cat?
posted by zomg at 5:02 PM on January 24, 2012 [3 favorites]


I didn't realize we were still allowed to say normal.
posted by Confess, Fletch at 5:03 PM on January 24, 2012


I came in about normal, lower than normal for my age group, higher than what my stated spending level was, but I could see making that if I actually ate all meals at home like the data say for the USDA. However, we buy a lot of stuff in bulk from a local store that sells it that way and do a lot of stuff ourselves. I bake our own bread with bulk flour, yeast in a jar that I get from Target because it's half the cost of the grocery store (like, $4 vs. $8), bulk powdered milk, bulk salt, and butter. We eat quite a bit of rice and get that in bulk. We get beans in bulk and then use them in all sorts of stuff - my wife takes garbanzos and makes little falafel patties out of them and makes sandwiches out of those. We eat homemade pizza every once in a while with a pesto sauce that we make using frozen edamame. All in all, we spend $50-$60 a week at the store. Less some weeks, depending on how many non-food items we get - the bulk store sucks for toiletries and paper products so we go to the regular grocery store, but the bulk store is much better for produce and a lot of other stuff. I guess it also helps that we mostly eat vegetarian, and we buy hardly any prepared foods.
posted by LionIndex at 5:15 PM on January 24, 2012


Actually, we're beating the typical married couple by $1300 on groceries.
posted by LionIndex at 5:16 PM on January 24, 2012


Buttery egg noddles with poppy seeds served next to Almost Any Cut Of Pork slow cooked with peeled and sliced apples (they don't have to good apples!) and cider and cinnamon. Some garlic if you like. Mince and place with noddles. Filling, warm, and keeps for days.
posted by The Whelk at 5:17 PM on January 24, 2012


I tried this and came in appallingly low. But, y'know, I have the $0.95 bring-your-own-mug coffee 5x a week at my local convenience store for breakfast. (The coffee. That is the breakfast. It's got cream and sugar in it.) I pack a lunch for work, every day, which consists of 1/2 to 2/3 cup of some one-dish food item I have cooked from scratch -- typically a soup or a dal curry. For dinner (and get-home-from-work snack), I eat "real food" (not packaged crap) that is either fresh fruit (snack) or something I have cooked from scratch (dinner). I don't eat much meat or any fish. I don't eat out. I don't drink liquor or beer. So, yeah. I don't feel deprived, but ymmv.
posted by which_chick at 5:26 PM on January 24, 2012


Meh. I tried this and came in below average for my demographic profile. But I also was guesstimating pretty wildly. I figure I'd need to keep a really careful expenditure-by-expenditure tally of my food-only expenses over a period of several months to get a truly useful figure. And that makes me suspicious of the averages we're being given. If they derived those just by asking people or just by looking at credit card expenditures, then all the figures are pretty meaningless.
posted by yoink at 5:34 PM on January 24, 2012


Everybody knows the Ripples is clearly superior to Ruffles. Ruffles tears the fuckin' roof off your mouth.
posted by symbioid at 5:37 PM on January 24, 2012


I come in high when you consider all my spending at grocery stores, which I find suspect, because I cook at home all the time and am not particularly profligate with my grocery spending. But my "grocery store" spending includes shampoo, diapers, garbage bags, dishwasher detergent -- and if we count Costco, it includes bigger items like new tires or pajamas for the kids, too, as well as gas for my car. I wonder how finely grained their numbers are.
posted by KathrynT at 5:38 PM on January 24, 2012


ethnomethodologist, I think prices are ridiculously high out west. I live in Toronto, but was in Calgary on business this summer. I had a fridge and a microwave in my room, so I stocked up breakfast and lunch food by getting veggies, tortillas, sandwich meat, plain Astro yogurt, etc. at the Safeway within walking distance of my downtown hotel (it was a round trip of 7 km, which was fine for exercise, but not quite what I'm used to around here.)

Prices in Calgary are the result of an inflationary economy. I travel a lot in Canada for work and prices in general are by and large free from any connection to intuitive logic. A litre of milk usually costs nearly twice as much in Ottawa as in Vancouver; if you draw a circle 100 km wide around Ottawa city hall you will encompass about 43 kajillion dairy farms. Do the same in Vancouver, and you will have a lot of salt water and vertical surfaces of rock, two terrain types not notably friendly to cattle*.

* Unless they have crampons and/or aqualungs.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 5:50 PM on January 24, 2012


We are about average for a married couple*, very low on dining out, but higher on groceries. We also live on Kauai, not Oahu, which drives prices higher. I'm a bit surprised because we do grow/forage/fish a fair portion of our food.

*We are an unmarried lesbian couple. Does anyone else find it strange that Mother Jones used this classification? I suppose it was the data available. But, harumph!
posted by kamikazegopher at 6:03 PM on January 24, 2012


I put in the figures for monthly spending by accident first, and was pretty damn apalled. Then I put in the weekly figures and realised I was still somewhere in their category of 'so liberal you're socialist!' with my spending. Slightly more than a quarter of mine is tracked in mint as 'alcohol and bars' though, so if I wanted to cut down I have an easy place to start. (This would have dual effect because my other major cost recently is drunk Sunday night grocery shopping at the convenient 24 hour QFC halfway between my house and the bar my boyfriend works at).
posted by jacalata at 6:42 PM on January 24, 2012


If you eat out twice a day (hello, Manhattan living!), it's incredibly easy to be dramatically more than their highest category. I can't possibly be the only person who does this (I'm not saying it's a good idea.)
posted by !Jim at 7:41 PM on January 24, 2012


I go out for dinner maybe twice a week with friends and so on and spend next to no money on booze and I'm still dramatically higher than their highest category. I call shenanigans.
posted by Phire at 7:46 PM on January 24, 2012


I think this makes more sense when you consider that like 15% of the population is below poverty level.
posted by desjardins at 7:55 PM on January 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


But how many of them are in the Citibank credit card demographic?
posted by jacalata at 7:57 PM on January 24, 2012


Again, the USDA and BLS numbers are not far off from the ones in the FPP link. So I don't think it's just about credit cards.
posted by desjardins at 8:31 PM on January 24, 2012


And actually, if the study excluded poor people then the amounts should be HIGHER and more in line with what people here on mefi are spending. But they're much lower than we'd expect from a bunch of people who can get credit cards.
posted by desjardins at 8:33 PM on January 24, 2012


The other part of the downtown Calgary supermarket prices is the word "downtown". Prairie cities, in particular, have reasonably cheap massivehumungousMonsterMarts on the outskirts of town and very very expensive downtown small food stores, which are designed to work like 7-11s even if they're called "Safeway". I once lived in City Park in Saskatoon for a year, and I bought most of my food in the local Macs Milk (24 hour Quik-e-Mart). I've never eaten worse or spent more.

Downtown supermarkets in Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal are much more reasonable. But yes, milk and cheese and yogurt are more expensive than in the States.
posted by jrochest at 9:19 PM on January 24, 2012


Stop looking in my shopping cart. These are not the doughnuts you are looking for.

We came in on the high side, but then good food/eating out is a necessary luxury.
posted by arcticseal at 9:29 PM on January 24, 2012


I work a lot and end up eating cheap crappy fast food way more often than I should. Looks like it's not that cheap... just crappy.
posted by infinitewindow at 10:39 PM on January 24, 2012


In my mind, where food is concerned, the broad MeFi demograph is single men in their 20s who live on Starbucks (which uses up 50% of their weekly budget), pizza, Subway, burgers, Doritos and Snickers. or food snob hipsters who won't touch a tomato unless it's heirloom, buy meat that comes with a birth certificate issued by an organic artisan farmer and will only eat 'fast food' if it's some obscure ethnic dish served from a food cart at the local farmer's market.

That I fit into neither category does not stop me from making this sweeping generalisation.
posted by essexjan at 2:33 AM on January 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm well over average for someone of my age and income. That's because what used to be real food is now "food substitute" and you have to pony up extra for real food. I'm sick and tired of this shit.

Case in point: When I lived in Austria, €1.49 would buy you a store-brand half-liter of nice, high-fat-content strawberry yogurt with real strawberries in it. I ate this for breakfast all the time, it was awesome.

In the US, a similar amount of money will buy you a container labeled "Strawberry yogurt" but if you look at the ingredients you'll find it's it's mostly whey powder, contains "Strawberry flavoring" and had to be colored with food dye. That's not yogurt. It's yogurt substitute. Real yogurt will cost you five bucks.
posted by dunkadunc at 2:51 AM on January 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Okay, this is now seriously weird -- I'm on Chrome and can't load Mother Jones at all. any other Chrome users having problems?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:32 AM on January 25, 2012


Oh good, something else to feel bad about.
posted by colfax at 5:44 AM on January 25, 2012


No problem on Chrome for me, Empress.
posted by essexjan at 5:44 AM on January 25, 2012


I can get a 24-pack of gluten-free Oreos for €3. :D

Was surprised that my own grocery expenses (just under €300/month) are lower than in the US, when I live on the French Riviera, the most expensive part of France outside of Paris. I too am on a gluten-free diet, plus I only buy organic/"label rouge" stuff. ("Label rouge" meats are from animals traced from birth, free-range, and often from older races that take longer to grow. The difference in taste is incredible. Oddly, there's no English Wikipedia page on it...) Also, 19.6% VAT. And wine. Of course, here I can get a good Burgundy for, like, €4-7, so it's not that much of a hit. There are organic fruit juices that cost as much as a bottle of wine. And I'm in the best place in the world for olive oil: extra virgin from a Bellet grove. (Bellet is *in* Nice, where I live.) It is soooooo good. No bitterness; like tasting spring sunshine.

This calculator did make me feel better about my restaurant expenses, though that brings us back to the "spending habits of the poor" thread :) I didn't eat out for years, got used to cooking big batches of chili to put in the fridge & freezer for lunches, throwing together a rice dish for dinner, and I feel like I'm throwing money to the wind when I pay €12 for my monthly splurge on sushi.
posted by fraula at 6:24 AM on January 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


If I could get better control over my food spending I'd probably be a lot richer and a lot skinnier (let's not even discuss the drinking). I am just recently getting back in to occasionally cooking dinner for myself, after having spent the last 6 months or so eating out / getting takeout for almost every meal.

I enjoy cooking, but I have lived by myself for 16 years, and frankly I got bored. I can pick up a lot of pretty decent takeout food in my 'hood for less than 10 bucks, and while I know it would cost me less to cook, I rationalize that it wouldn't be hugely less, especially when waste is factored in to it. I find it hard to consume a loaf of bread, a litre of milk or a bag of veggies before it goes bad, and when I do cook, I end up with tons of leftovers that aren't always freezer-friendly. Not to mention that when you're single, there are social benefits to going out into the world instead of spending all my free time huddled in my man-cave.

Anyway, like I said, I am trying to get back into the kitchen -- I've made a few nice things lately (roast beef, roast chicken, bolognese, cajun red beans) and even managed to make soups from some of the leftovers, socking away the excess in the freezer. Wish me luck!
posted by sevenyearlurk at 6:50 AM on January 25, 2012


I tried this based on New York prices (I live in London and imagine the cost of living is similar). Then I remembered that I don't eat out, unless with my boyfriend, and I either cook for him or he cooks for me at weekends, which skews things a bit. I tend to eat cheaply - more cheaply than I should because I need to be eating more veg - but the cost varies depending on the type of supermarket I use ('local' ones cost more than the big supermarkets- it's as much as £3 versus £1.50 for the same amount pastrami if I go to one with a meat counter) and time of day (I often nose round the reduced aisle and use it to get a cheap meal or to stock the freezer)...added to which I buy meat about once a month and buy coffee out once a week, if at all. My spending on food has been about £14 this week, because I just needed stuff to make my lunch and a few extra things on top.
posted by mippy at 7:34 AM on January 25, 2012


This thing seems a bit wrong - $175/week for a family is really not an outlandish amount to spend on food, but it says we spend 3-4x the "Liberal" average. Hell, growing up in Iowa, *right next door* to our food, my exceedingly thrifty (but also health-conscious) parents still spent over $100/week on food - and that was 20+ years ago.
posted by chundo at 9:12 AM on January 25, 2012


I'm shocked that Mother Jones wouldn't have information on a city in Wyoming.

Shocked, I tell you.
posted by Fister Roboto at 10:30 AM on January 25, 2012


They don't have anything on Maine, at all.

Nobody cares about Maine.
posted by dunkadunc at 11:45 AM on January 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


We all know you don't eat anything but free lobster and tiny blueberries anyway, Maine.
posted by maryr at 12:59 PM on January 25, 2012 [3 favorites]


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