Embarrassment at buying Value items at the suprmarket

(123 Posts)
Bumblequeen Fri 11-Jan-13 18:26:07

I buy in Sainsbury, Asda, Lidl and I only buy the shop's products or value items such as biscuits, sweets and other bits. I somstimes feel embarrassed at the till especially when people in queue have trolleys full of luxury products products working people should be able to afford.

We do not buy red meat as too expensive. Only eat chicken and fish.

Budgeting for food shopping is soul destroying. I love food, preparing, cooking and eating it.

Moominsarehippos Fri 11-Jan-13 18:34:10

Some of its ok. Some is crap - but some of the 'premium brand' stuff is rubbish too. I bought a very expensive tin of organic-picked-by-a-yeti-on-a-full-moon chopped tomatoes (emergency purchase) and when I drained it (as per my recipe) it was about 3/4 juice, with very little actual tomatoes in it.

Forget about other people.

Chottie Fri 11-Jan-13 18:35:55

I never look in other people's trolleys, I'm just concentrating on getting my shopping done and I am sure a lot of other people are exactly the same.

InNeedOfBrandy Fri 11-Jan-13 18:36:16

I don't care in the supermarket but all value stuff gets decanted into containers or hidden. I use cereal pourers and biscuit tins, I put stuff into other stuff and no one knows the difference.

I was just thinking about this the other day.
I shop online buying mainly value products ans special offers, I wondered if I would be embarrassed if someone saw my shopping trolley in real life.
Sadly I came to the conclusion that I would be.

Shakey1500 Fri 11-Jan-13 18:38:07

I couldn't give a toss about what people may or may not think about my shopping habits. There's a good phrase...

"You wouldn't care so much about what people thought of you if you realised just how infrequently they did....."


Moominsarehippos Fri 11-Jan-13 18:38:59

I always look in other peoples baskets. What amuses me most is the single guys with own label bread, baked beans etc and the most expensive tins of cat food going.

skaen Fri 11-Jan-13 18:41:05

I used to work as a checkout assistant. I would have a (tiny) judge at people who had heaving trolleys full of junk food but other than that, didn't notice at all.

The Ocado app makes a big thing about the products it has on special offer so I don't think there is any snobbishness about using discounts or not.

Please don't worry about it.

GrassIsntGreener Fri 11-Jan-13 18:41:50

If people I cared about, cared about me buying value or fancy products, then I may not wish to continue the relationship with them. As for anyone else, I really don't care! Why would I want to pretend I have money if I don't anyway that sounds like a wast of energy to me.

Im more embarrassed to have a basket full of junk food than value stuff, in fact I feel a bit proud that I haven't been swayed by advertising executives to buy fancy packaging

colleysmill Fri 11-Jan-13 18:45:54

Crickey no! I'm not embarrassed by my trolley!

I shop in Lidl and happily let anyone who asks know that. Before Christmas in the shop 2 people approached me and asked what I was buying (booze wise) and i helped a man pick a nice bottle of red for a friend.

I shop there not always out of necessity but hell if I can save money I will do.

mercibucket Fri 11-Jan-13 18:45:56

I always look but only from boredom and idle curiosity

Own brands are healthier - less salt, less sugar etc. Just tell people that in the queue if they look sniffy

I do judge my mil for decanting aldi stuff into other packets though

hotmama Fri 11-Jan-13 18:49:16

Personally, I think it is very sensible shopping. Check out moneyconsumerexpert.com - Martin Lewis' website - he recommends dropping a brand - and other good budgeting tips.

I appreciate that choosing to do this is different to having to IYKWIM.

Honestly, nothing to be embarrassed about - I mix and match the stuff I buy.

I make red meat go far by doing spag bogs etc and do food planning so don't waste much. I make the most of special offers and freeze stuff.

I couldn't give a toss what is in another persons trolley and pretty sure that this is the reaction of most shoppers. If people are 'snooty' they need to get a life!

sad that this is bothering you and that you feel skint.

Feel smile that you are making lovely homemade food rather than buying expensive ready meals that are high in salt etc.

Chin up smile

strumpetpumpkin Fri 11-Jan-13 18:49:52

if i saw someone buying value pasta, potatoes, value vegetables, basics etc, i would just assume they were on a skint week. I wouldnt really think anything of it. I do it myself.

If someones trolley was loaded with value chips, crisps, chocolate,cola, undisclosed meat pies etc, Id think they were probably a bit rough, but i wouldnt really spend any time thinking about it, nor would I worry what other people thought of my basket usually.


babster Fri 11-Jan-13 18:52:23

I buy value orange and apple juice cartons for the children's packed lunches as it tastes no different and saves a fortune. One day, dd1 told me that a friend of hers had commented on it - she replied incredulously 'It's just orange juice!'. I love that kid.

lastSplash Fri 11-Jan-13 18:55:26

I like the basic minimalist aesthetic of value range stuff.

Also I feel like I'm not paying so much for people to advertise at me, (packaging designers etc.) and more of my money is going on the actual food.

Maybe I'd feel differently if it were lidl's basic, but I have no inclination to decant my waitrose essentials shampoo and conditioner etc...

rubyrubyruby Fri 11-Jan-13 18:57:12

I think that you are probably more aware and self conscious of it because it's what you can afford.

I buy many value products even though tbh, we can afford not to.

Over Christmas I went for drinks at a friends house who is very wealthy. I love Disaronno and he served me up Aldi's own brand equivalent because he can't tell the difference (except the price) and neither could I.

MrsSchadenfreude Fri 11-Jan-13 18:58:06

I don't look. I would only notice the contents of someone's trolley if they had really odd stuff - like a trolley full of cat food and one small bag of salad, for example. Crisps, chocolate biscuits and fizzy drinks, I would assume children's party.

When I was really skint, I used to shop in Netto and Farm Foods. The toilet rolls in FF were cheap as chips, and quilted. I got taken to a very fancy restaurant in London and they had the same loo rolls there. We used to buy a lovely Languedoc wine in Netto for £2.50 a bottle, and Oyster Bay Sav Blanc for £3.99, when it was at least £6.99 everywhere else. Farm Foods had branded frozen stuff, and we got a box of filo pastry wrapped prawns in there for £1.50 a box - they were excellent, as were the samosas for the same price. Tinned tomatoes are tinned tomatoes, and if the juice is a bit thin, just squirt in a bit of puree to thicken.

lastSplash Fri 11-Jan-13 19:01:10

Agree with * cluelessnchaos* upthread - I'm pleased not to be hoodwinked into spending hundreds of pounds a year on fancy packaging.

RandallPinkFloyd Fri 11-Jan-13 19:02:13

I couldn't give two shiny shites personally.

It's not something that's ever crossed my mind. My trolley is usually a heady mix of value lines and whoops stuff.

My freezer is bursting at the seams with terribly posh food plastered in yellow labels! Works for me grin

littletingoddess Fri 11-Jan-13 19:03:38

If I saw someone with lots of value products, I'd just think they were being sensible with their money.

I don't know if it is the same in the UK but in the US, products are often made by one company and then sourced by various brands. A few years ago a company that manufactured peanut butter issued a recall as some of the batches had been contaminated with a food-borne bacteria. Not only were some store's own-label brands recalled, one of the name-brands was affected as well. As a result, quite often I find myself wondering if the 'value' brand is exactly the same as some of the 'name' brands, only with different packaging.

Why on earth are you embarrassed? I buy value stuff and special offers and bulk out meals with cheap veg and pulses. I consider that good common sense, not embarrassing at all. I have enough money to buy high end stuff if I wanted, but I look for good value and quality not brand names and fancy packaging.

What puzzles me is why you think it is cheaper to eat fish than red meat? Fish is a treat for us as it is so expensive. Cheap cuts of meat need careful cooking but make great family meals.

Adversecamber Fri 11-Jan-13 19:04:41

I would never judge on value stuff but sometimes think foolish when people have trolleys heaving with over priced stuff.

Reaa Fri 11-Jan-13 19:05:52

I bumped into one of the school mums at local supermarket one with more money, bigger house than me and I not only had a lot of basic stuff but I had reduced stuff too oh the shame after getting over the initial embarrassment i did not care at least she could see I was feeding my family smile

ouryve Fri 11-Jan-13 19:07:13

I buy "luxury" stuff and basics stuff and everything in between. Nowt to be embarrassed by.

BillyBollyBrandy Fri 11-Jan-13 19:08:45

Go to Aldi! Cheap and good value generally.

Don't feel bad about what you are buying!

newgirl Fri 11-Jan-13 19:11:43

I buy lots of value/own brand things and can afford to buy more pricey things - I think it's quite trendy. Eg cheapest butter, rice crisps, peas, digestives etc as I cannot see any difference. Much prefer own brand meusli to some posh brands - I feel quite clever. Iceland freerange eggs £1 - would feel stupid spending £1.60 that others charge for freerange.

insprognito Fri 11-Jan-13 19:12:33

I feel a bit like that too sometimes but feel it is off set by all the lovely fruit, veg and fresh meat I buy. I hide my value stuff by putting the decent stuff on top
Some things just don't cut it though. I can't buy value bread, coffee or beans.I buy value loo rolls cleaning products, biscuits, peanut butter,all sorts really. I too love cooking and would love to just buy what ever without having to take account of the price.

Virgil Fri 11-Jan-13 19:15:12

I buy loads of value stuff and am currently in the process of trying various new things to try to reduce our weekly shop spend even further. But I am decanting it to make it a genuine test not influenced by packaging. I confessed to DH the other day that his marmite wasn't actually marmite (after him eating it without complaint for three weeks). After the initial scowl he laughed and admitted he couldn't tell the difference. The DCs have been eating tesco value cornflakes all week (decanted into a cereal tub) and haven't said a word so that switch is staying too.

DHs best friend is very senior at one of the big supermarket chains and has told us that in many many cases the value range is exactly the same product as the store's normal range, just in different packaging.

insprognito Fri 11-Jan-13 19:18:25

Yes Aldi is good and because its smaller you get round much faster.Don't like the weird tills though I like to pack in order AT the till, oh and they don't have baskets either!?

Badvoc Fri 11-Jan-13 19:19:23

I buy a mix of both.
Tend to only buy luxury stuff when on offer.
Really like the co op own brand cleaning stuff for example. And the ocado essential range.
I don't see why buying value stuff is something to be ashamed of...

magimedi88 Fri 11-Jan-13 19:22:04

When I see someone with a trolley full of value stuff I think 'astute & clever budgeteer'!

I put on my judgey pants when I see people buying ready chopped veg, froaen roast potatoes etc etc.

Chestnutx3 Fri 11-Jan-13 19:24:53

See usually I don't equate buying value stuff with poverty but intelligence knowing that often its the same stuff but half the price than the product with the pretty box. I can afford the branded stuff but prefer not to buy it unless it is different.

colleysmill Fri 11-Jan-13 19:28:23

I used to wonder at people buying ready grated cheese - but my granny couldnt physically grate it herself so perhaps the chopped veg is the same?

I think everyone is trying these days to make their money go further - value brands are one way of doing this. There is no shame at all in making your weekly budget go further.

orangetickle Fri 11-Jan-13 19:28:48

littletingoddess - a lot of the time it is the same stuff in different packaging. When I was a student I temped in a factory for bread stuff (hot cross buns, crumpets etc). The packets came off the distribution line and were then labelled (and presumably priced) differently depending on where they were going: M&S, Tesco etc.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AdoraBell Fri 11-Jan-13 19:35:58

If I saw a trolley heaving with luxury goods and top name brands I'd be quietly guesstimating the value of said trolley and working out how much value stuff I could get for the price. A trolley full of value goods would make me think "there's someone who knows how to shop"

If I wasn't daydreaming, that is. Seriously, don't compare your shopping with someone else's.

TotallyBS Fri 11-Jan-13 19:36:05

I don't think (most) people care whether you have value brands or the expensive stuff.

What attracts MY attention is trolleys full of booze or pet food smile

Thewhingingdefective Fri 11-Jan-13 19:38:33

Not embarrassed at all. I also pile my basket or trolley high with the 'quick sale - still fresh stuff' and other reduced stuff.

I do like noseying at others' shopping on the checkout conveyor belt though, particularly if it's a weird old combo of stuff.

Bumblequeen Fri 11-Jan-13 19:41:37

I am probably being a snob silly!

I think it is not having the choice to spend more that gets to me. Some choose to 'buy cheap' which is entirely different.

I buy frozen fish which is far cheaper. I bought frozen mince recently and it was awful.

jan2013 Sat 12-Jan-13 12:02:23

if i saw people with value stuff i would just think 'we are all in the same boat, everyone is being hit with the times we are in now' - i would never think twice about it. i don't really get too embarrassed about my shopping trolley and its full of value stuff.

ChunkyChicken Sat 12-Jan-13 12:13:01

The only time I notice anyone's purchases is when they are behind me at the till. And the only time I judge think anything of it is when its a slightly dodgy looking older bloke buying 3 bottles of whiskey, 4 cans of fosters and a pizza.

Mostly I spend the time herding my 2yo DD, shushing my crying 8wo DS, checking I've got everything, and trying to sort out the bags & arrange everything on the conveyor so its easy to pack.

Do what you need to. Forget everyone else!!

SlatternismyMiddlename Sat 12-Jan-13 12:18:50

To be honest I am usually so focused on getting my own shopping done and dealing with the DCs that I don't look or care what is in other people's trolleys. I would occasionally notice the teenage/young twenty types going through the 10 items or less till with multi pack crisps, beer and Wkd - then I am just wistful!

GrassIsntGreener Sun 13-Jan-13 06:06:34


I was surprised to see grated cheese come up cheaper per kg compared to the same brand lump of cheese, so often buy it now. Lasts longer at home because it goes further too.

BoerWarKids Sun 13-Jan-13 06:22:35

I'm not embarrassed and neither should you be! If someone is scathing about seeing value stuff in your trolley, it says far more about them than you.

All the rich people I know will happily admit to shopping in Aldi and Lidl.

ravenAK Sun 13-Jan-13 06:40:21

I always try the value brand of anything I want to buy at least once - if it's crap (baked beans, coke) I'll know for next time, & if it's fine that's a saving I can spend on wine/chocolate.

Also a big fan of Aldi/Lidl/Approved Food.

Nothing particularly big or clever about paying twice the price you actually need to spend on tinned tomatoes or plain tortilla chips!

PurplePidjin Sun 13-Jan-13 07:02:50

I'd be more embarrassed to have a trolley full of preprepared beige shite, tbh. Fresh fruit and veg is fresh fruit and veg, no matter the label and it's half the price in the farm shop

Mum2Fergus Sun 13-Jan-13 09:22:50

I wouldnt give a thought to buying value, or seeing anyone else buy it either. Shopping is the one thing I insist on doing on my own lol so can do at quite a leisurely pace smile Uve always paid attention to other folks shopping, though that comes from having worked a checkout for a few tears...you can tell a lot from folks shopping lol

Taffeta Sun 13-Jan-13 09:27:21

I agree its nothing to be embarassed about, and appreciate its easy to say this. You feel how you feel. FWIW when I see people with Value stuff in their baskets I think they are canny shoppers.

If it makes you cringe, I'd suggest using the self checkout tills as people can't stare at your shopping so much there. Or online if you're buying in bulk and can keep delivery costs down/free.

CheungFun Sun 13-Jan-13 09:34:59

I have always bought some value items and some branded items (DH won't budge on his Heinz tomato ketchup, and I won't budge on Heinz baked beans!). Generally I buy value cereals such as weetabix, cheerios, cornflakes and porridge, tinned tomatoes, tinned kidney beans, pasta and value biscuits are good too!

I usually buy free range eggs because they taste better and I don't feel guilty about the chickens then, I would love to buy free range meat, but I just can't afford it, so i try to buy the next one up from value.

I wouldn't judge someone for having a trolley full of value items, I think anyway that most people just want to do their shop and get home ASAP so they aren't looking at what other people are buying!

Moominsarehippos Sun 13-Jan-13 09:54:59

I would only judge on loo roll. It has to be the soft stuff. But then I get piles (TMI but relevant) and some of the 'cheaper' stuff is very thin and scratchy.

Some own brand stuff is very good though. Not Tesco (bleuch) but other places is mostly ok. People do insist that 'its Kellogs/Nescafe/Cadburys in their own packs' but I'm not sure.

tiredemma Sun 13-Jan-13 09:56:53

I love telling people that I shop in Aldi!

HRMumness Sun 13-Jan-13 09:59:30

Definitely wouldn't judge someone with value products. Only if they had kids and they had lots of processed junk and no fruit and veg.

Although supermarket pricing makes me angry. They totally screw the suppliers and pricing their value and own label ranges against labels is part of that. There is a book called Shopped that made me stop going to supermarkets - fruit and veg box, local Indy stores and markets as much as I can.

Bonsoir Sun 13-Jan-13 10:01:43

Shop online? I like shopping online and taking advantage of delivery of large quantities of boring purchases like laundry detergent on special offer.

Bonsoir Sun 13-Jan-13 10:03:08

Thinking about it: I might indeed feel a bit embarrassed (greedy) at the supermarket buying 12 boxes of laundry detergent to take advantage of a 3-for-2 offer. But I just feel economical and clever if I do so online hmm.

Loveweekends10 Sun 13-Jan-13 10:05:57

I just think 'that person has their head screwed on' . If I happen to look across and see lots of luxury stuff I tend to think 'what a knob'. But that's just me.
So keep buying the value stuff.
We shop at Aldi. I can't stand wasting money on packaging and advertising.
I like Aldi stuff because its good quality yet cheap.

WinkyWinkola Sun 13-Jan-13 10:07:30

Why be embarrassed? It makes you a canny, savvy shopper! Besides, own brands are very often manufactured by those who make premium brands.

I notice in Waitrose, everybody buys their value range. It's a huge success for Waitrose. I don't know if I could buy the cheapest cheap own brand meat cuts in ASDA though. They never look quite right. I shop at both ASDA, Waitrose and Ocado.

I always look at other people's shopping. It's fascinating to me because I am a nosy cow.

Moominsarehippos Sun 13-Jan-13 10:48:32

I have found that Sainsburys own brand (some of it anyway) has leapt up in price since before christmas. Smaller items (under £1 up by about 20p). That really adds up. They must have realised that people are switching brands and areb cashing in.

LadyAlex Sun 13-Jan-13 21:15:40

I'd think less of someone who was foolish enough to spend money they hadn't got on shopping they couldn't afford.
There is a lot to be said for cutting ones cloth accordingly.

I buy a lot from the local market. I love buying veg from there, no packaging to advertise its price banding. Just good, honest food sold by everyday people out to earn their crust like the rest of us. I like seeing my neighbour working on a stall owned by a family from our village. It gives me a sense of community too and supporting each other.
Minimal fat cat profiteering too!

FloweryDrawers Sun 13-Jan-13 21:45:35

I'm a value brand shopper - got into the habit of it when skint and we're used to it now. There was a great thread here last year where everyone was testing the Sainsbury's Basics range, working out what was good and what was crap as far as quality/taste/ingredients went. I chose a few regulars at that time, that I always buy in Basics now. Love the reduced-sticker section as well!

My shopping has never been stared at, and has only been commented on once. In fact, it was today, when the woman behind me looked at her own fillet steak - and then at my fillet steak, reduced from £7 something to £1.99. Said she wished that she'd looked in the reduced section grin.

nkf Sun 13-Jan-13 21:49:05

I think people probably look less than one imagines. I have been buying reduced items and I do pull them off the stickers when I get home. I wonder if people spot me stocking up on reduced croissants. I stick them in the freezer and they are fine warmed up in the oven. I don't think I will ever pay full price again.

Bonsoir Mon 14-Jan-13 11:47:15

I look at what people buy in supermarkets - it is curious to see the selections people make and how wildly different they are from one another. But I don't think about how much people are spending. I feel sad when I see very old people buying a lot of low-nutrition easy-to-eat food (lots of biscuits and not much else).

Badvoc Mon 14-Jan-13 12:40:58

Hmmm...I did look on Saturday! I was thinking about this thread and decided to have a peep.
A young guy with meat cream and wine...casserole for some some lucky girl/guy?
And then a mum of 3 young girls with 2 family packs of crisps, tins of hot dog sausages and bottles and bottles of lucozade and fizzy drinks sad
Made me sad so I am not looking again!

Pootles2010 Tue 15-Jan-13 11:56:24

Ha I really hope they don't - mine is always about 80% full of things with little yellow stickers on! I have a slight issue with stalking the lady with the price gun at around 6.30 blush

MERLYPUSS Tue 15-Jan-13 12:35:57

I buy everything in Aldi and Lidl. What they dont sell is basics range or yellow sticker. I may push the boat out and get bogof bargains or 2 for 3 if the item price works out the same as my usual groceries.
I have very few named brands that I use only. Coffee is about the only thing I wont compromise on.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 15-Jan-13 12:42:44

I'm never interested in what other people in the supermarket buy - I don't know them - so I don't care.

I buy lots of value brand stuff & it has never occurred to me to wonder what strangers in the supermarket think of my purchases!

I shall have a look from now on & make judgey comments in my head that will serve no purpose, because they'll never know what I'm thinking!!!!!! grin

Bumblequeen in the nicest possible way, there are better things in life to worry about than what strangers think of your shopping.

cozietoesie Tue 15-Jan-13 12:45:14

LIDL do have yellow stickers, MERLYPUSS. (I don't know Aldi well enough to say.) They take a straight 30% off or something.

Pootles2010 Tue 15-Jan-13 12:53:37

Aldi do indeed knock money off stuff thats going off - they just don't use yellow stickers as I assume they're too expensive - you get a piece of paper that they've written new price on with marker pen grin

TheFallenNinja Tue 15-Jan-13 12:56:13

Never. I see the weekly shop as a war to get the best prices. Premium brand doesn't always mean premium quality.

I want them to get as little if my hard earned as possible.

Theas18 Tue 15-Jan-13 13:04:25

Why feel embarrassed because you have different spending priorities to others. Unless you have a trolley full of value pot noodles you aren't feeding your family any worse (and probably better!) than the family with the trolley full of "finest".

I feel proud that I'm making the best of family spending. I bought a £1.20 pork hock in the butchers and felt very happy that it has made soup that will feed 4 for at least 2 meals (with veg- aldi.... and split peas... indian supermarket).

I have so many calls on my spending with the kids/uni etc but if I didn't I'd probably eat the same (cook from scratch, lots of veg, not much meat) and go on better holidays!

goingmadinthecountry Tue 15-Jan-13 22:15:30

I really don't care. I buy lots of economy items because I hate wasting money. The outlaws wouldn't be seen dead in Lidl or similar because they view it as failure. They have lost their house in the past and live off other family members but see cheap shops as a stigma. A very wealthy friend of ours frequently shops there because he hates wasting money and appreciates good value. Apparently many of the consultants at the local hospital prefer to shop at Aldi.

Like Theas18 I too feel proud not to waste money. I prefer to spend any spare money on nice stuff.

Francesa Wed 16-Jan-13 08:10:41

I have no problem in buying cheaper own brand products, some items are really almost as good as the more expensive branded product anyway.

wiltingfast Wed 16-Jan-13 08:25:49

I shop in aldi and tbh not only would I not notice what was in your trolley, I'm not sure I know what their own brand stuff looks like! I buy a mix of their stuff depending on price and experience (eg I like the more expensive cans of tomatoes). Most of time I buy the cheapest as it tastes the same.

Def do not worry about it.

wiltingfast Wed 16-Jan-13 08:28:33

I would add I used to be a bit embarrassed at having to shop in aldi but the value is amazing and their deli type products (salami etc) not only cheaper but miles better than my local big name supermarket.

So I tell everyone now they should shop there ;)

Longdistance Wed 16-Jan-13 08:36:09

I like trawling the supermarkets for anything with a reduction sticker on.

I'm not budgeting, I'm tight grin

Always been like this as used to work for Sainsburys. Some of the value products are the same as those that are supermarket brand, just in a different packet.

higgle Fri 18-Jan-13 13:14:59

I'm very proud of feeding 4 of us and eating well on our budget. When the trolley behind me has a load of luxury stuff I just look at my veg and value stuff and think I could teach them a thing or two. I am a bit posh though.

goldenslumber Sat 19-Jan-13 02:26:07

No shame. Sometimes buying Value Range is the best way to get the product you really want.

Like horse: otherwise it's a trip across the channel.

MrsDimples Sat 19-Jan-13 02:48:09

Well done you!!

Why spend more than you need to?

The only things I've eaten today that weren't in the reduced section was my breakfast - value oats and Aldi grinded seeds / berry mix.

It's become a hobby in our household. Check out the reduced section as often as possible and stash up the freezer. Last week I got a huge amount of bread rolls reduced. DH works 12 hour shifts, so take a meal and a couple of sandwiches. I got a large variety of different types / topped rolls / subs, not just reduced, but double reduced. A forty eight 'ideal for freezing' roll pack for 74p.

I also keep in my freezer frozen veg you can make cheap dishes out of. Frozen onions may be more expensive than fresh, but peppers, mushrooms, spinach etc aren't. Bung them all in a huge pan with some frozen garlic / garlic & ginger purée , some lentils / mince a can or two of tinned tomatoes & some herbs and you've got several meals for not much money and really healthy too.

Aldi's motto, "Spend a little, live a lot", should be your spiritual guide wink

I hate buying booze anywhere other than Aldi now. Such a waste of money & you're guaranteed quality too. If I pop in another supermarket for a bottle of wine, I'm torn between price & quality. No such dilemma in Aldi.

We have season passes for a theme park. We buy them on offer at half price, go loads, save hundreds of pounds. Exactly the same principle. Hours & hours & hours of fun and happiness and excitement. Not exactly soul destroying, especially when a family paying on the gate prices, pay not much less than us for a whole year. Is that embarrassing? I think not grin

If you love cooking, set yourself a challenge to make the most creative, delicious meals you can for as cheap as possible.

MrsDimples Sat 19-Jan-13 03:19:43

LIDL do have yellow stickers, MERLYPUSS. (I don't know Aldi well enough to say.) They take a straight 30% off or something.

Aldi do yellow stickers too.
You have to find the spot in the fridge they stash the reduced stuff, it's not a permanent place like in other supermarkets. Post Xmas we got 3 of their cheese board selection packs, complete with cheese board in the reduced section for less than half price of one pack. Cheese freezes wink

OhTheConfusion Mon 21-Jan-13 11:21:29

I had never been to Aldi until I went to a party at my friends parents house. They are sooooo posh and spent the night bragging about the aldi prosecco!

I now love their wine, deli selections, fruit and veg!

If you can get to see a copy, maybe in a local library, yesterday's observer had a food magazxine with meals for a family of 4 for £5, and a review of value items, beans, cheese etc. Waitrose and M&S did well but some other stuff as well.

I'll see if I can link to it, then at least you're buying Value ranges because a national newspaper recommended them as decent tasting, not just because they're cheap. smile sad.

I'll see if I can find it on the Guardian website.

Got them.

This is the Food Magazine supplement with 4 servings for £5 recipes not sure that that's really that cheap but never mind

This is the Economy brand taste test, part 2 is here. Based on these, don't buy very cheap bread.

The Food Blogger Miss South's recipes are fab though.

fuzzpig Sun 27-Jan-13 14:52:47

Am late to this great thread but thought it worth bumping up again smile

I don't judge what people have in their trolleys, because I understand that it's not the full picture. We do our weekly shop online, but occasionally DH and I will think 'fuck it' and I'll nip to the local Sainsburys after work. People there might look in my basket and be hoiking their judgy pants way up because on a 'fuck it' day I will simply be buying a couple of ready meals and a heap of chocolate! But who cares what they think, because they aren't seeing the well balanced delivery that we normally get.

We get plenty of Tesco value stuff, it's nothing to be embarrassed about at all. There's no need to pay more. For example even if I suddenly became rich (ha!) I would still buy value rice because it's perfect!

Our trolley has a mix of brands, store brand and value. I do get a few convenience foods - they are more than worth the extra money for me, because health problems mean I can't waste energy/strength doing things like grating cheese.

Going to have a look at the above link about bread though, as we usually get value range bread...

CwtchesAndCuddles Tue 29-Jan-13 13:14:36

I would be very impressed by your trolly and think you were someone who had more sense than to buy into all the marketing of the big brands!!!!

The shopper in front of you with all the big brands may have a huge overdraft...............

Tryharder Wed 30-Jan-13 17:38:34

grin goldenslumber!

BoffinMum Sat 02-Feb-13 20:06:30

I am a bargain whore. In fact I made friends with certain assistants in Waitrose so I got tip offs when the massive reductions happen. They are also happy to blip my coupons in when I am in extreme couponing mode. Really, if you see it as sport, it's absolutely fine.

BoffinMum Sat 02-Feb-13 20:07:27

You realise the cheap stuff is quite often the same stuff as the expensive stuff in a different package? And made in the same factories with the same ingredients?

duchesse Sat 02-Feb-13 20:12:39

Good grief my trolley very rarely contains anything not reduced or "value". I don't care. I pay £££ less than other people for my shopping.

IDreamedADreamOfSausageRolls Mon 04-Feb-13 21:20:00

I lurk to buy reduced stuff from M&S at the end of the day, then peel the yellow "reduced" stickers off everything as soon as I get out of the shop (if you take them off right away they don't stick). Most of my friends are better off than I am and I often have people to supper when I can't quite afford to go out. I would be so embarrassed if one of my friends looked in the fridge/freezer when I was cooking and saw that everything nice was bought as an end of day markdown!

MakingAnotherList Mon 04-Feb-13 21:37:36

If getting my shopping delivered I will happily add lots of value items.
When shopping in Sainsbury's I always cover any value items or put them in my basket/trolley with the label down.
No idea why. I know it's a bit pathetic.

LouiseFisher Mon 04-Feb-13 21:41:41

It shouldn't matter! Don't think people look in other peoples trolleys anyway! Well I hope not..

yummymumtobe Mon 04-Feb-13 21:59:05

why would you care?! We are not especially on a budget and buy loads of value and reduced stuff. If buying beans and tinned tomatos and pasta etc why would you buy anything other than value? I can never believe it when i see people buy anything other than value beans! Spend money where it makes a difference I say - eg I wouldn't buy value sausages due to meat content or the bread as it's really over processed. I get immense satisfaction from saving money. Often it's the people who HAVE money who buy value stuff II think as they know how not to waste it! On the other hand, people who have less money may spend more because they are aspirational and care what people think!

miggy Mon 04-Feb-13 22:05:26

The only things I cringe at buying are the cheapest nastiest tinned hotdogs that I buy for training the dogs, worry that someone will think I am feeding my children utter crud. Otherwise anything goes smile

BoffinMum Tue 05-Feb-13 09:23:33

Well I spent eight years living with a millionaire and a bigger chaser of supermarket bargains I have never seen! He was positively indecent in his desire to spend as little on groceries as possible. So go ahead and buy the cheap stuff, as everyone will think you are loaded!

BoffinMum Tue 05-Feb-13 09:25:27

But what he saved on groceries he spent on architects ripping him off wink and builders, and antique dealers gringrin

It never occurred to me that there could be anythng wrong with buying 'value' items in the supermarket. It doesn't strike me as something only 'poor people' would do. Does anyone really care if your tinned sweetcorn has a green giant on the label or a white an orange basics one?

piprabbit Tue 05-Feb-13 09:40:51

My DH is one of the people who hovers waiting for the staff to finish putting out the yellow label reduced items. I would feel embarrassed hovering like that. However, all credit to him, it does mean we can afford to have joints of meat that we just couldn't afford otherwise. We've a nice piece of beef in the freezer that was about £13 full price, but he got it for £5.

So I don't judge because I realise there is no point pissing money up the wall just to get a brand when that money could be better spent elsewhere.

HeathRobinson Tue 05-Feb-13 09:41:21

I don't see any shame in buying value products. But I also don't look in other people's trollies. Do people look? confused

Oh, and if you want to buy tinned mushy peas without added colour, the Asda SmartPrice tins at 8p, (8p!) are my recommendation.

VitoCorleone Tue 05-Feb-13 09:43:03

I never look ar anyones shopping.

I also buy mainly Tesco Value stuff. DP once came shopping with me and said "are you not embarrased when people see you have a trolly full if value range?" and i told him i really couldnt care less, if people judge then thats their problem, we cant all afford a trolly full of named brands.

VitoCorleone Tue 05-Feb-13 09:50:02

Just to add, i used to work at McVities, they make all the value biscuits too, exactly the same as their own brand, you only pay more for the advertising and packaging.

I remember packing fancy bourbons, then we changed wrappers to value ones and still packed the exact same biscuits

duchesse Tue 05-Feb-13 12:40:56

Sorry for thread derail, but, ArbitraryUsername I love your moniker!

Why thank you. It is... Erm... Arbitrary! grin

DreamingOfTheMaldives Mon 11-Feb-13 16:13:24

Some of the value products are exactly the same as the own brand products, just in different packaging! I read this somewhere and that the batch code/factory code will often be identical meaning it is the same product.

I noticed this with Tesco Value and Tesco own brand part bake baguettes.

Don't be embarrassed about your shopping OP as long as it's not full of junk food

EMUZ Wed 13-Feb-13 01:50:03

I only feel bad about it since a guy filmed me angrysad
There were probably 4 of us at the reduced section and he said (really loudly) "look at this, scum of the town like f'in vultures. Gonna put this on youtube so people can see the Scrotes of the town"

I may or may not have unleashed my rage on the manager blush

HappyJoyful Wed 20-Feb-13 09:43:44

Don't know if this has been mentioned, but since having a child I often look at sugar / salt contents on things and I've noticed recently that a lot of the value products - in both Sainsbury's and Tesco have less sugar content (I guess this may mean they have other chemical things added ? I could possibly be ignorant on this but have checked and don't seem to..)
2 examples off top of head I recall are
Basic's Sainsbury weetabix and also noticed the Value fromage frais in Tesco say no added things and had less sugar than the 'goodness range' or whatever it's called..
Anyway, as I say, could stand to be corrected but it certainly made me think.

smileymam Thu 21-Feb-13 19:40:20

I used to work in a cake factory, not much difference in luxury product to value, mostly the difference is the packaging.

StuffezLaBouche Thu 21-Feb-13 19:50:39

I would never, ever judge someone for having value items in their trolley. For me it's all about knowing which value items are ok and which aren't worth it. E.g. I would happily buy value bacon pieces for cooking, but wouldnt touch value coffee with a bargepole.

I'm usually to lazy busy to be in a supermarket but when I am the only time I notice anyone's basket/trolley is if they're buying 30 loaves of bread/ 30 tons of beans or similar then I like to guess if they're stocking up for a large family or buying for a community group type thing.

Honestly the only time I have ever judged anyone is when they have a trolley full of junk microwave type meals and kids snacks but have spent £££ on brand name alcohol and whole cartons of cigarettes.

StuffezLaBouche Thu 21-Feb-13 20:30:05

A couple of months ago my mum and I were hosting a big event and on the morning we decided we didnt have enough alcohol. Going up to the checkouts with a trolley filled to the brim with beers, wines and spirits on a sunday morning was the only time ive worried i might be judged!!

NanaRamma Mon 25-Feb-13 14:40:34

Ive switched from buying del monte bannanas to the tesco value range - virtually identical tasting for 30% less price!

SayMama Mon 11-Mar-13 14:02:54

If anything, I'm a bit smug about my value products grin I'm happy to pay 44p for a packet of Asda Smart Price digestives, because theirs honestly no difference between them and McVities. Same goes for SP Garlic bread, Asda own washing powder, SP bleach, SP jaffa cakes to name just a few.

KirstyJC Mon 11-Mar-13 14:06:39

I get a bit embarrassed when I see other people with fruit and veg in their trollies and not just all frozen crap like mine grin, but I couldn't care less about value brands or not.

LovesBeingWokenEveryNight Mon 11-Mar-13 18:09:43

Op totally know that feeling. Doesn't bother me with some products but others yes it does.

iclaudius Mon 11-Mar-13 18:12:33

I am dead proud to buy value brands and own brand stuff and would not dream of judging others for such.
I am only ever ashamed of my shopping if there's crap in there

iclaudius Mon 11-Mar-13 18:13:06

In fact I have been known to hide crisp under veg

iclaudius Mon 11-Mar-13 18:13:51

Auto correct - not 'crisp' 'CRAP'but crisp quite apt in this case!!

Groovee Mon 11-Mar-13 18:34:03

The only thing I do look for is ring pulls because I struggle to use a tin opener. Asda value range have them on them the rest don't.

WhitesandsofLuskentyre Thu 04-Apr-13 16:53:40

I've just done a self-scan Waitrose shop and I walked round the store putting all my stuff in a huge Aldi carrier smile.

ethelb Thu 04-Apr-13 21:53:49

I know this is a bit of a zombie thread but I have never considered someone buying value items. I worked in a pharmacy for a while and was v judgemental about people who bought neurofen etc rather than generic ibruprofen.
Plus I do a big online supermarketshop of value/basics staple stuff, but v little fresh food as I have a cheap veg box and monthly freerange meat delivery. So a) you wouldnt see my trolley and b) it doesnt tell the whole story.

Asinine Sun 07-Apr-13 17:14:04

I have no embarrassent buying any value product except gin (decant into posh bottle) which I admit does feel a bit seedy, especially in our small town. But compared to buying pregnancy tests, it's a walkover.

TheSecondComing Sun 07-Apr-13 17:25:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

expatinscotland Sun 07-Apr-13 17:27:39

Why be embarrassed? Do people honestly care?

SEWannabe Sun 07-Apr-13 21:25:37

I do most of my shop in Lidl, but get some bits and bobs from Tesco (but only their Everyday Value basics range).
I can get a bit embarrassed if i see one of the mums from school, when i have a basket full of value items, but i try not to care.
What's important is that i can feed my family.

PS- I'll have you know that Tesco Value Jaffa Cakes are lovely!

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