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Middle Class Photo Project

Kim Grant, Draper, Utah.

Marketplace Contributor Jun 8, 2012

I was listening to this story on my drive home from my monthly grocery shopping trip. I was feeling very lucky that I have found a way to make our food budget work. Being middle class means we can take advantage of economies of scale. My husband and I were spending far too much on our grocery bill at our local grocery store. Nearly $800 a month just for two people, two dogs, and two cats! This left very little for even a movie night out or gas money for low-budget camping weekend. We’ve been looking for ways to save and I decided to spend the $50 for a Costco membership. This has allowed us to cut our grocery bill in half. I’m able to buy all our groceries for the month, taking advantage of buying in bulk. We freeze meats, bread, veggies, coffee beans, you name it! Now we only supplement with fresh leafy greens from the grocery store. Coffee costs us pennies a cup, and I bring lunch to work for about $2 a meal. It only takes $40 to provide quality meats for us for about 4 weeks. My big indulgence now? I spent $20 on two novels, which was more than 12 chicken breasts. I remember when I had $150 a month to spend on food, soap, and paper products when I was in college. Making it stretch was so very very hard. I’m frustrated that in our society, the people who need the benefits of shopping at Costco are the least able to take advantage of economies of scale.

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