To Buy Groceries In The US
like to buy groceries at large supermarkets, neighborhood groceries,
and outdoor farmer's markets. In all these
cases, you serve yourself and pick your own produce.
you go shopping, check for coupons and sales in your local newspaper.
Check the expiration date of each before using it. At the front of the
store or in the window you may find flyers posting the day's specials.
If you can't find any specials, ask a clerk.
poultry, pork and eggs are all subject to rigorous and consistent federal
inspection by the U.S.D.A. (the U.S. Department of Agriculture) and
rated by "grade". Meat is graded by both quality (wholesomeness,
safety and freshness) and yield (amount of usable lean meat). The highest
grades for meat are prime, choice and select, and the yield is graded
from 1-5, 5 being the highest.
about meat and poultry grades and nutrition at the USDA website:
also graded on quality and appearance, with the highest grades being
AA and A, suitable for both eating and baking. Grade B eggs are of lower
quality and may be suitable for baking.
about eggs at:
seafood are also subject to federal inspection, but not consistently.
Make sure you sniff and examine the fish before buying it. Shellfish
like clams, mussels and oysters, if uncooked, should have closed shells.
Open shells indicate they are unfit for consumption.
produce and foodstuffs are often free of pesticides and additives
that may cause health problems. They are currently subject to many different
regional and private standards. However, the federal government is in
the process of establishing uniform regulations for what constitutes
ways to save money:
about in-house "generic" brand products, like the "Safeway
Select" brand at Safeway, a large national grocery chain. They
will generally cost less than "brand name" items.
products by checking the "unit price" of each item.
can save on dented cans by asking for a discount, but they may be
contaminated with botulism, a potentially lethal toxin.
grocery chains like Safeway offer "club cards" which give
regular discounts on groceries.
obtain the membership form at Safeway's
stores like Costco are large warehouses filled with bulk items at wholesale
or discounted prices, like 20-packs of toilet paper. These stores may
carry not only perishable and nonperishable foods but household items
like appliances, toys, clothes, tires and furniture. For a fee you may
become a member. FFF
>> Find a Costco warehouse
your own - Some stores offer even steeper discounts by letting you
bag your own groceries.
on the alert for product recalls. Some brands of juices and meats have
been found to contain e. coli bacteria, potentiially deadly to infants.
Watch the news for product recalls.
At the checkout counter, the clerk or bagger may ask if you want a paper
bag or a plastic one. Some people prefer to use paper so they can recycle
to buy produce, seafood and meat: ask the store manager. Delivery days
are not taxed. However, you will pay a sales tax on certain prepared
food items like deli sandwiches. This sales tax will be added on to
your bill at the time of sale. Taxed items are indicated by a "T"
next to the price. To learn more about sales taxes for different items,
Markets, held on weekends in many large cities, bring fresh produce
directly from the farms. They offer low prices and fresh produce. Many
organic farms offer their produce here. Check your local paper for dates
and times of the farmer's markets in your city.