November 1, 2013
Jamaicans urged to shop smart, support local farmers
Crystal Harrison, Staff Reporter
Jamaicans who are battling harsh economic times are being encouraged to shop wisely and support their local farmers.
The Consumer Affairs Commission (CAC) says that they support the 'Eat What We Grow, Grow What We Eat' campaign and is calling for home gardening as a national endeavour to relieve some of the burden of feeding the family.
Below is a list of the tips that the CAC says consumers can follow to be a smart shopper:
Plan your budget according to the meals you prepare. Whether your limit is $1,000 or $10,000, you will need a plan or strategy of getting value for money.
Buy Jamaican and support the farmers. It is proving to be safer and more nutritious.
Shop at the farmers' market before going to the supermarket, wholesale or corner shop.
Buy the foods and vegetables that are in season.
Freeze juices for the children and adults in your family.
Clip coupons from the newspapers offered by supermarkets. They are real money and can add up if you use them as directed.
Read carefully the expiration date and the conditions of the discounts.
Do not overextend your budget to buy items you do not need or cannot afford.
As far as is possible, purchase essentials such as tissue, bath and laundry and household cleaning items in bulk. Combine purchases with another family or friend and purchase these items from a wholesale.
Purchase meat from the meat shop. Ensure that the supplier/seller is licensed to sell meat and that you are not being duped into buying expired and/or non-approved meat.
Do look out for store brands for non-essential items such as paper products, ketchup, soy sauce, jellies and emergency canned foods. The store brands are usually cheaper than the known brands and look that way because of the 'no-frills' labelling.
Buy Jamaican when purchasing dairy foods such as eggs, milk or cheese.
Remember to budget for a treat. No matter how challenging the economic times, the family deserves to enjoy at least a weekend of fun (at home or out) with ice cream, movies or a bake-off.
Do not compare yourself with others because always there will be lesser and greater persons than yourself.