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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Monday, May 27, 2013

Frugal Kitchens 101 - Combating the Rising Cost of Food in Canada

Frugal Kitchens 101
The rising cost of food has become a major concern for many Canadians.  A recent survey by the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC Canadian Consumer Outlook Index) found that 91% of those surveyed said belt-tightening and smarter decisions were the order of the day when buying food.   Of those surveyed, 84% said they believed the food they purchase has increased in price over the past year.  According to the survey, the average Canadian shopper spends $411 per month on groceries.  As a result, there is a growing concern on the impact of food prices on budgets and less deviance from those budgets.  Canadians are looking for cost-saving strategies that they can use to save on their next trip to the grocery store. 

In light of the rising food costs in Canada, it is important to realize that food is abundant and the Canadian population is affluent even though food insecurity is a growing concern.  The shameful side of this abundance is the amount of food that is wasted.  The Value Chain Management Centre (VCMC) estimates $27-billion worth of food produced for Canadian consumption never makes it to our bellies.  Statistics Canada actually calculated food waste per individual for 2009 to a total of 172 kg (379 lb)!  According to the VCMC, this food waste impacts the economy as well as the environment.  More importantly, the VCMC noted that in Canada, half of the food waste occurs in the home.

Combating the rising cost of food in Canada becomes a balance between frugal shopping and reducing food waste in the home.  It makes little sense to reduce what you are spending on food without reducing what food you are wasting. 

Ten ways to reduce the cost of food:

  1. shop the outer aisle
  2. read the labels
  3. shop by unit price
  4. comparison shop
  5. shop the sales
  6. eat more produce
  7. focus on real/whole foods
  8. cook from scratch
  9. grow you own 
  10. keep a well stocked pantry
Five ways to reduce food waste in your home:
  1. reduce what you buy
  2. store foods properly
  3. make a conscious effort to use leftovers
  4. don't peel fruits or vegetables unless necessary
  5. reduce serving sizes 

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