The chairman of Asda has called on ministers to do more to address the cost of living crisis and warned that people will suffer when prices rise and remain high.
Lord Rose of Monewden said that “there is a side effect” because of the cost of raw materials and the impact of inflation.
Prices of sunflower oil, wheat and oil have been affected by the war in Ukraine. Recent data from market researcher Kantar indicated that inflation for total food prices had now reached 5.9%, which is the fastest increase since December 2011.
The Kantar figures add an estimated £ 271 to the average amount shoppers will pay this year.
At the same time, consumer price index inflation rose to 7% in March, and analysts have predicted that it could have reached more than 8% in April due to the effects of higher energy bills this month.
Rose told the BBC’s Sunday Morning show that the government “can not solve all the problems”, adding: “Sadly, the consumer will also suffer.”
He suggested that families remove products they do not need because costs are reaching a “new peak”, adding: “What we all need to do now is perhaps change our behavior. I will personally look at my own behavior and what things I do. and what things I do not need.
Bloomberg via Getty Images)
“There are no uniform rules about Covid. There are no uniform rules about all sorts of things. The government must look and say ‘how do we make things easier?'”
Rose added that ministers can also help the cost-of-living crisis by talking to food retailers “to make sure we cut out every extra cost”.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak is under pressure from Tory MPs, some government ministers and Labor to do more to help people with their living costs.
Last week, official data showed that 91% of British adults reported that their cost of living had increased, up from 88% earlier in April.
Figures from the Office for National Statistics found that 39% of adults said they had reduced their food purchases in the past two weeks.
Referring to the cost of raw materials, Rose said there would be a “new level” that “will not go down”. “It’s a new highlight and it’s something that people will need to receive,” he said.
“What we will now have to think about is, will it have a long-term effect on inflation, because then we will have a wage spiral, or not?”
Because the effects of the cost of living crisis are affecting millions of people, which is to say, there are some small changes that could reduce your bill by hundreds.
Adam French, a consumer law expert, said: “Rising food prices and the cost of living crisis are putting enormous pressure on household budgets at the moment, and no one wants to pay too much for food.
“Shopping around and buying your own branded goods is an easy way to save hundreds of pounds a year, as well as to avoid expensive convenience stores if you can. Those who are willing to switch to a cheaper supermarket for their regular store are likely to find some affordable alternatives to their favorite brands. ”
1. Avoid convenience stores
While not an option for everyone, avoiding convenience stores can save shoppers 9.5% on their grocery store a year – and that includes Sainsbury’s Local and Tesco Extra.
As? analyzed the average prices for 48 items at the two largest convenience store chains, Tesco Express and Sainsbury’s Local, and compared the costs with the same items at their supermarket counterparts.
The highest weekly price difference between Sainsbury’s and Sainsbury’s Local during the period was significant £ 10.20, or £ 322 over the course of a year. At the same time, a basket of groceries from Tesco Express costs an average of £ 279 more over the course of a year.
For those who have the opportunity to go to a regular supermarket rather than a convenience store, it pays to change.
Shopping around can save £ 9.21 a week
It often pays to look in different supermarkets for the best prices.
For example, in March 2022, Lidl was the cheapest supermarket, with a basket of 21 groceries costing an average of £ 26.83.
The same or equivalent goods from the most expensive supermarket Waitrose cost £ 36.04, which is a saving of £ 9.21.
Do the test for your own brand
Shoppers can also make significant savings by choosing supermarket products of their own brand over expensive branded goods.
For example, if you switch from Innocent orange juice (3.60 GBP for 1.35 liters, 27p per 100 ml) to Aldi’s The Juice Company Smooth Orange Juice – it only costs 1.69 GBP per 1.75L carton (10p per 100 ml ), buyers can save almost GBP 100 per year.
Search in different aisles
As? found that certain products, including rice, sauces and baking ingredients, can be found in several different supermarket aisles at different prices.
For example, rice and chickpeas may be cheaper in the world’s grocery store than they are in other parts of the store.
In the same way, sultans and cashews often cost less in the backyard as well as dried fruit and nuts or snack shelves.
Supermarkets often place their less profitable goods high and low on the shelves, and those they want to market at eye level. Shoppers should scan the shelves carefully and look up and down.
5. Top up when you can
Grocery prices can vary from week to week and fluctuate by up to 284 percent.
Price fluctuations, or “yo-yo” pricing, make it often worthwhile for buyers to top up when items they buy regularly are discounted.
This approach can work especially well for store cabinets and products that can be frozen.
6. Be rewarded for your expenses
Shoppers can sign up for supermarket loyalty programs to earn points and save money on their shopping.
Many systems offer exclusive discounts, rewards, charitable donations and contests to loyal customers.
As? found that customers could save between 50p (with Sainsbury’s Nectar) and £ 5 (Iceland) for every £ 100 spent when using a supermarket loyalty scheme.
However, these savings can be easily removed if the store’s prices are higher than the competitors’. So while it’s always worth signing up for programs offered by stores you already use, you should probably not change where you shop just to earn points.
7. Do not be fooled by discounts
Supermarkets often place vertical signs with offers in the middle of the aisle, with the intention of catching shoppers’ eyes.
While special offers can be helpful, they can encourage customers to buy items they did not intend to buy.
Buyers should look at the unit or “per-100g” cost rather than the total packaging price – this makes it much easier to compare the product with alternatives.
It is also worth noting that “value packages” do not always offer the best deal. Sometimes it is actually cheaper to buy two packages of five than a package of 10.
8. Write a list and stick to it
Supermarkets purposefully distribute different types of groceries across different parts of the store to ensure that customers pass by as many shelves as possible, even if they are only there for a few basic items.
Taking the easy step of making a list and trying not to be distracted by other products is an easy way for shoppers to save money.
9. Be flexible with best-before dates
Foods with an expiration date must be used no later than midnight after the expiry date, otherwise it may be unsafe.
But best-before dates are much more flexible and do not have the same security issues.
Food near or even after the best-before date is usually perfectly ok to eat and often heavily discounted. If you find something in the cupboard that has passed the best-before date, give it a scent – it smells good, it should be OK to eat.