Buying Organic Doesn’t Have to Break the Bank

Teri Gault, CEO and founder of, wife and mother of two, began The Grocery Game as a home-based business in February 2000. As an avid saver and coupon-clipper, Teri decided to use her skills to create a list to help identify when to use coupons, based on categorical sales trends, to achieve maximum savings at her local supermarket. Since 2000 The Grocery Game has expanded to over 50 states and continues to expand globally. Today the average family of four saves up to 67% a month in groceries, totaling about over $500 a month in savings, by playing The Grocery Game and following Teri’s Tips to shopping.

You WILL pay more for organic than conventionally produced food, BUT you DON’T have to pay full price! Plus there’s some money saving alternatives you may want to consider.

First of all, “organic” or “natural”? In the US, to bear the name “organic”, it must be USDA certified organic, which is costly to food producers. But, more and more “natural” food manufacturers are doing almost the same things as considerable alternatives. The catch is that there are no government standards for what “natural” may mean. Your best bet is to visit the manufacturer’s website and read what “natural” means to them. You just might find, for instance, a chicken grower who pledges to use no hormones and no antibiotics. If that takes care of your main concerns, you just cut your poultry bill by about 75%!

Store brand organics can often run at half the price of their name brand counterparts. This week, in Chicago, the Jewel store brand Wild Harvest organic animal cookies were on sale for $1.79, while Whole Foods’ cheapest organic animal cookies were Annie’s brand, a smaller package for $3.39, which brings me to another organic thrifty tidbit…

Fill your cart first with “on sale” organics, whole grains, and natural foods at your major supermarket, then fill in the gaps at specialty health food stores. Even store brand to store brand makes a difference from one store to another. For example, this week, Jewel’s Wild Harvest Organic lemonade was $2, while Whole Foods’ organic same size 365 brand was $4.69. All told, we spent $80 for $176 worth of healthy and organic foods at Jewel in Chicago, and only bought four items at Whole Foods that were good deals by my standards, and using coupons at both. Now, I’m not trashing Whole Foods, I’m just telling it like it is. And you can’t beat Whole Foods for great produce and meat selection and organic yogurt. That Brown Cow goes on killer sales. Print a coupon from the Brown Cow website for even better savings!

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