What Does This Have To Do with Homeschooling?
What does comparing grocery store prices have to do with homeschooling? It has everything to do with homeschooling! Where we shop determines how much money we spend on groceries and how much we have left over for curriculum, supplies, classes. You can also get your own kids involved and make it a home economics study and do your own grocery comparison in your area. It’s really quite eye-opening! Find out why certain places charge a certain amount? Are they a large chain? Are they a local start-up? Do store brands make a difference in price or ingredients? Why does buying in bulk change the price? Does packaging play a role in the price of the product?
How I Did The Comparison
I went to each store and gathered the prices for each of the products to input on the spreadsheet. If there was a sale on the item, it would be written in.
I did a similar comparison between grocery stores in our local area last year. The stores I compared were King Soopers (Kroger), Target, Sprouts, Lucky’s, Vitamin Cottage, and Safeway. Since then, Whole Foods has moved into the area. I never pass up an opportunity for scientific query, so I decided to find out where they rank within the list.
As grocery prices can change from year to year and even season to season, I had to redo the prices from all stores in order to get an accurate result. This year I also compared exact products. That was probably the most difficult part of this process was finding products which span across all stores. When I did this comparison last year, I was comparing different products: store brand mustard to Annie’s brand. It gave me an idea of prices, but not as accurate as I was hoping. This year, I compared 67 products across all 7 stores to see which store really has the best deals.
The Results of The Comparison
Here are the final results of the overall comparison. This compares the same cart of groceries from each store. You can download the spreadsheet here to get individual product prices.
The graph shows the regular price on the left, sale price on the right, and average price in the middle.
Individual Categories Comparison
Now, there may be a reason you want to go to two stores or three because they have a specific product you like or better prices, so I broke this down into individual categories. Here they are:
More Detailed Comparison Between Markets
If I exclude the larger grocery stores and only compare the data from the four markets, Vitamin Cottage, Whole Foods, Sprouts, and Lucky’s, I am able to get a much more detailed looked between the stores. It does change the data slightly as Sprouts and Lucky’s battle for last place. Instead of only 67 products to compare in the overall data above, I was able to compare 154 products across 4 similar stores. This data is available on the spreadsheet for download.
Note: We are located in Colorado. Not all of the stores that I have compared are available in every area which is why it’s encouraged for you to do your own. Post your results in the comments below!