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 Post subject: How much do you spend on food?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 12:17 pm 
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Location: Orygun
I know many of you have probably answered this question before, but since JD brought it up again on the blog, I thought I'd ask it again on here...

How much do you spend on food?

We have a $500/mo. line-item in our budget that covers Food/Groceries/Toiletries/Dining out/Take out, etc. We have come in under budget (by pennies) a few times, but usually end up right about $550-$600/mo. (which means I should probably adjust my budget). And for reference, this is a family of 4 that does not dine out much at all.

We shop at Costco for staples, and usually try to buy sale items at the grocery store -- but we refuse to compromise our health... much of what we buy is either organic or whole grain, and free of growth hormones, high fructose corn syrup, or partially hydrogenated oils.

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Last edited by Jethro on Tue Aug 21, 2007 1:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 12:50 pm 

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Location: Vancouver, Canada
We spend about C$300 a month for a family of three. However, we do eat out during the week. For $400, I could probably manage all of our meals. This includes a lot of organic and higher end products.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 12:54 pm 
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As Jethro knows very well -- he's my brother, remember -- Kris and I split food costs (as well as costs for everything else). I generally shoulder the cost of eating out, though, because I like to do so more often. That said, through the first six months of 2007, I spent the following on food:

$709.21 on groceries
$940.53 on dining out

What does this tell me? I eat out too often, for one. Good grief, but I could save some money there. I'm guessin that combine, we spent $1400 on groceries and $1400 on dining out in those six months. That's nearly $250/month on groceries for the two of us, and nearly $250/month on dining out. In other words, my wife and I spend nearly as much as Jethro and his family on food, but there's only two of us.

And here I thought it might be nice to go to Gino's tonight...


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 12:58 pm 
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Location: Chicago
We spend a lot on food. I think right now we're budgeted at $100/wk for groceries, and $50/wk for dining out. That's for 2 of us. We don't eat out much, but in Chicago 2 nice meals for both of us can eat up that dining out budget for the month.

I'm okay with spending as much as we do on groceries because cooking is not just food for us, it also makes up a good chunk of our hobby and entertainment budget as well. I almost never go out to lunch because the food I bring from home is much better. Our rule is, unless a recipie is really good, or really, really easy, it doesn't get made a second time.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 12:59 pm 
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Hey! I just followed the link to my own blog! I can see that in the past year or so, we've managed to curb our food spending somewhat. Here are some comarisons...

Groceries
2006: $400/month
2007: $250/month

Dining Out
2006: $250/month
2007: $250/month

Why are we spending less on groceries this year? For one, our garden is producing more than it has before (though this wouldn't have been reflected in the numbers above). For another, I've been focusing on fitness. We're eating fewer processed foods. Also, Kris has taken to doing the shopping herself. We used to go together, but she leaves me at home more often lately because there's no doubt that we spend more when I'm with her. "Don't we need this $7 jar of fancy olives?"


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 1:18 pm 

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Yowza! I ran a category report in Quicken for last year and see that we spent an average of $575/month on food. This is for three people, but most of it is really for my girlfriend and me (her teenage daughter never eats what we eat and doesn't each much at home.) We rarely eat out, maybe once or twice a month at most, and we cook most meals from scratch...I guess the bills are so high because we like to get good ingredients ($30 bottles of olive oil, free-range organic eggs, organic meat and chicken most of the time, etc., and we eat lots of fish and shellfish). Still, I'm amazed that we spend this much on food each month; that's more than we spent on rent when we were living in our apartment last year!


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 1:33 pm 

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Location: Baltimore, MD
I've only been keeping track for the past 3 months but it seems that we (my wife accounts for 99.9% of the family's grocery shopping) spend around $850/month on groceries alone. About $100-150 additional eating out. Holy shopping cart, batman!! This for a family of four (4yo and 9mo). Baby formula is a big expense in these numbers. Not sure when the ped. will let the little girl switch to actual milk but I hope its soon.

As an aside, I don't think I mind spending so much on food. I love to eat, my wife likes to cook (we're a match made in heaven, I know), and a healthy diet is important to maintaining a healthy lifestyle which we consider of utmost importance.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 1:54 pm 
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I spend about £100 a month. Which is about $200 US. And that's just for me.

In my defence, food is more expensive in the UK that it is in the US and the exchange rate only makes it worse.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 1:55 pm 

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All said, about $500 a month for a family of four.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 2:28 pm 

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We spend about $225 on groceries and $100 eating out. That's for two us , but my wife has been eating more to produce breastmilk for our 4mo, which has to be the best invention ever. :D


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 2:38 pm 

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In asking this question, you should remind people to subtract non-grocery items. A trip to Safeway or Costco can entail cooking implements, shampoo, laundry soap, dish soap, toilet paper, Kleenex, feminine hygiene products, baby stuff, prescriptions, film processing, light bulbs, etc.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 2:46 pm 
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consultantjournal wrote:
In asking this question, you should remind people to subtract non-grocery items. A trip to Safeway or Costco can entail cooking implements, shampoo, laundry soap, dish soap, toilet paper, Kleenex, feminine hygiene products, baby stuff, prescriptions, film processing, light bulbs, etc.
I actually include all of that (except film processing or clothes) into my food/grocery category because I'm too lazy to sort through every receipt and input every item into a separate category... which is why I included 'Toiletries' in my post above. So in reality, the portion of that line-item that is purely food is going to be somewhat less... but not by a huge amount.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 2:53 pm 
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Our total does include a bit of booze now and again. :)

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 4:40 pm 

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Location: Chicago, IL
we're usually between $400 and $500 a month for two adults and one toddler. I don't know the breakdown as it changes a lot but we do order in a lot more than I would like. While its a lot of money I work ridiculous hours and my wife has some health issues so its really more of a convenience for me so I can see my daughter for an hour or so at night.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 5:31 pm 

Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2007 9:37 pm
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Location: Ottawa
Over the past 12 months we've averaged $700 per month on groceries (just food here) and $300 per month on dining out. That's pretty high but we are a family of 6. We celebrate all birthdays, mother's day, father's day etc by going out to eat. Hubby and I also have a Sunday lunch date most weeks since it's cheaper than a dinner date.

Before I started working, we were in the range of $575 for groceries and $180 for dining out. My kids are all two years older since then so they eat a bit more, but mostly it's just that I don't have time to shop all the sales and cook as much from scratch.


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