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Survive rising food prices

With high fuel prices, interest rates and escalating food prices, everyone is feeling the pinch.

by: Food24: Lee-Shay Collison | 04 Sep 2008

According to, the factors driving higher food prices: high distribution costs, increased world demand and escalating corn prices, are unlikely to go away any time soon.

But just because food prices are high doesn’t mean that you can't still eat well.

Here are some tips on how to keep within your budget.

Avoid shopping at supermarkets
Supermarkets are not the best options when it comes to fresh, seasonal and locally produced food. Instead, get an organic fruit and veg box from Ethical Co-op &ndash the box contains a week's supply for a family of four at R120 &ndash or check out Urban Sprout.

Also, buy in bulk from warehouse traders or discount grocers and save.

Get your cookbooks out
Cooking from scratch saves lots of money, and is far healthier too. You won't have all those preservatives and additives in food that you’ve made yourself.

Cook now, eat later
When you’re making seasonal dishes from your favourite cook book, double up the recipe and freeze half for a ready-to-eat meal later. Do this every time you cook and you’ll be saving money on electricity and won't be tempted to order take-aways when you don't feel like cooking.

Entertain at home
Consider forgoing eating out except on special occasions or invite friends over for good old home-style cooking.

Bake your own bread
To eat good bread and keep costs low, make your own. This easy recipe for basic white bread should get you started.

Drink tap water
Bottled water is expensive and in many cases no better than tap water. So get used to drinking tap water or get a water purifier and save loads of money. It's also good for the environment as there'll be less plastic litter.

Grow your own
There are plenty of fruit and vegetables that you can grow without needing much space. Lettuce, herbs, leeks, tomatoes, baby marrows, butternut and gem squashes, strawberries, raspberries and apples are all easy to grow.

Eat less and don’t waste
Eat less meat and fewer processed foods, and more fresh, seasonal and naturally produced foods. Only buy what you need, and compost your fruit and vegetable scraps and peels to make free compost for your garden. Reduce waste by buying products that aren’t over packaged, like supermarket fruit and vegetables, for example.

Find substitutes
Generic or store-branded products have been around for years and, with quality improvements, they've become more credible substitutes for many staples. Less fancy meat cuts such as "flat iron" and "petite sirloin" steaks can fill in for more expensive cuts.

- None


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