Devising and Revising a Grocery Budget

Pennies

The end of the month is approaching fast, and it’s time to reevaluate our budget, a few things have changed during the last month. Fortunately, they’ve changed to our benefit.

In working with a budget, it’s wise to spend as much as you can comfortably spend while purchasing the highest quality ingredients available to you. Remember, cost saving measures should come from proper kitchen management before you start to cutting costs by spending your money on inferior ingredients.

There is no one-size fits all budget. The cost of food varies across the nation. As those costs vary so much you have to consider the costs of different food in your area and work around that. For instance, here in the middle of nowhere food is generally expensive, but pastured eggs and grass-fed meats are slightly less expensive here than they are in the city. By contrast, fresh produce is considerably more expensive. So, I spend less on meats and more on produce than someone might spend if they had better access to fresh fruits and vegetables but limited access to quality meat.

Look at your budget and eliminate fixed costs–like cow shares, CSAs or buying club order minimums–first. Next, create specific budgets for those areas where your costs aren’t fixed such as fresh produce assuming you don’t have a CSA, meat and fish, milk and eggs etc. If you have a little extra in your budget at the end of the month, don’t squander it; instead, save it for those random times you need to head to the grocery store to purchase unexpected items.

Here’s Our Budget:

Fixed Costs


Cow Share

1 ½ Gallons Fresh Local Milk per Week

$60 per Month

Buying Club

Organic Bulk Grains, Legumes, Flour, Raw Cheese, Fats and Oils, Frozen Fish etc

$100 per Month

Flexible Costs

Grass-fed & Pastured Meat

Local Roasts, Stew Meat

$65 per Month

Raw Milk Cheese

Local Artisan Sheep and Cow Milk Cheese

$20 per Month

Local Pastured Eggs

1 Dozen per Week

$15 per Month

Organic Fruits & Vegetables

Local Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

$180 per Month

    Total: $440

The last trick to devising a budget is to maintain a little flexibility, some months might necessitate changing your plan a little bit. It’s always important to leave a little room for revision.

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