Where to find affordable food

Unfortunately, food in Australia is not cheap and eating out even less so. To make it affordable takes a bit of local knowledge and a few tricks to ensure you’re not wasting your hard earned money.

Markets & Supermarkets

For supermarkets, Aldi is much cheaper than Coles or Woolworths (the latter also known as ‘Woolies’). Many locals are glad to have a cheaper option of supermarket shopping and Aldi has become a very popular place to shop because of its lower prices.

Another shopping option (if you live near Kensington, Sydney), is Australia’s first ‘rescued food’ supermarket: OzHarvest Market, inspired by Denmark’s surplus food supermarket, Wefood. It not only aims to reduce food waste but to make food available to everyone in the community, especially those who need it.

OzHarvest Market stocks perfectly edible food that has either been donated or rescued from supermarkets and is based on a ‘take what you need, give what you can’ philosophy: If you can’t afford to pay, take what food you need.

It’s becoming more common to for supermarkets to sell their ‘imperfect’ produce at a reduced price so that it doesn’t end up as landfill. It is estimated that one third of all food produced in the world is wasted – that’s 1.3 billion tonnes of food costing the global economy close to $940 billion each year. To help address this issue, Harris Farm Markets offers fresh produce labelled as ‘imperfect picks’ which is cheaper than standard produce but just as edible. Keep an eye out at other supermarkets as they may also offer imperfect produce at cheaper prices.

Free App for cafe food

A growing favourite of many people is Y Waste. This platforms aims to reduce waste in the foodservice industry – meals that would otherwise end up being thrown out by shops and cafes at the end of the day. In addition to reducing waste, it’s a great way to save money on meals. All you need to do is download the free app and it shows you what’s available in your area – you pay a discounted price via the app and you collect it at a specified time of the day. Go to www.ywasteapp.com or download the app on the App Store on on Google Play.

Australian seasonal food guide

Knowing what’s in season in the city or region you live in means that you will avoid high prices. If you love strawberries, for example, but it happens to be winter when you’re thinking of buying them, they will be double or triple the price in Sydney at this time of year so you would want to buy them in the summer months. See this Australian seasonal food guide to find out what produce is in season – it also varies greatly from city to city.

There are many more tips and tricks on saving money on food which we will add in coming posts. In the meantime, please share in the comments your own tips on ways to save money on food and shopping!