“The results even shocked me! I had no idea!”
This past month, starting on July 18th and running through August 16th, I put myself through an unforgettable and radical challenge, a grocery bill savings challenge, to be exact!
After noticing that I was spending more than $1100.00 per month on groceries, equaling more than 33% of my total expenditures, it was clear that I needed to make a change. My obsession with shopping at Whole Foods was taking me down! The solution? Cook at home and shop locally.
The one and only rule was that I could only shop at Whole Foods once a week (at most) and only for items that I could not pick-up anywhere else (the famous Whole Foods vegan chocolate cake, vegan gravy, etc.). From there, I had to simply be creative about where I picked up items to support my vegan lifestyle.
Somewhere along the way on my vegan journey, I made the assumption that “real” vegans shop at Whole Foods. I mean, seriously, the CEO of Whole Foods is a life long vegan. What other reason do I really need? The problem is that my identity as a vegan quickly became wrapped up in where I shopped. After asking fellow vegan friends about their shopping habits, there were clearly two camps of shoppers; those that shopped exactly as I had been, and those that didn’t.
The month went by very quickly! At no point did I feel deprived. I only went to Whole Foods on three different occasions, and held to my commitment of picking up items I could only find there.
I noticed that my shopping habits shifted significantly. First I started cooking A LOT! I also turned to local markets and shops to get what I needed for home cooked meals. This was a beautiful side effect actually. By avoiding Whole Foods, I started supporting local private business again, a habit I truly missed. In fact, in the end, this became the key. By shopping locally, I was able to support local business and also find 95% of everything I needed. Most of the vegan products I was accustomed to buying at Whole Foods were available right in my hood. Who would have known?
Grocery Bill Numbers:
- My spending went from $1184.00 in the month of June, to $530.00 between July 18th and August 16th, thus keeping $654.00 in my picket.
- If I go back to spending $1184.00 per month, that comes to $14,215.00 per year.
- If I keep up my new-found cost saving mission, I will spend only $6365.00 per year, saving almost 8k.
Where I shopped: