Lifestyle

Which Supermarket offers the best value for veggies? We compared the top 6 to find out!

Back by popular demand is our big supermarket chain shop comparison. Recently, we did a comparison of different types of grocery staples across the leading supermarket chains to see how much prices varied. The results were surprising!

This time we stuck to a standard veggie shop for 8 items in 6 stores, to see if the results were as surprising as last time. Fresh veggies are often a staple in the weekly shop so we wanted to see how much the basics can vary.

If we’re just after those weekly basics will our back pocket feel the pinch in the same way when we’re in a rush and convenience shopping over strategic buying?

Let’s find out!

weight loss meal plan

What did we buy?

Our Veggie Staple Shopping list looked like this:

  • 1 kg pack of carrots
  • 1 kg small white washed potatoes
  • 1 x telegraph or continental cucumber
  • 1 kg brown onions
  • 1 x iceberg lettuce
  • 500 g white cup mushrooms
  • 6 x truss tomatoes
  • 1 x head garlic

Where did we buy?

We shopped at a mix of independently owned and popular supermarket chains in Australia.

  • Woolworths
  • Coles
  • Aldi
  • Harris Farm
  • Foodworks
  • IGA

What were the results?

$8.60 difference across 8 items – a difference of 32%!

So we were comparing like for like we took $2.50 off the Foodworks bill as they only sold potatoes in 2kg bags @ $4.99 and we shopped for 1kg bags elsewhere. We’ll also need to dig a little deeper into weights of items to analyse the price comparisons. We also purchased a single bag at each supermarket,  except at Harris Farm where they provide environmentally conscious paper bags at no cost.

Once again it will come as no surprise that independently owned IGA and Foodworks came in most expensive at $27.82 and $30.36 with Aldi offering a saving over Foodworks of 32%, at just $21.72. Although there are a few important things to note as we look at the detail.

Mushrooms and Truss Tomatoes

The biggest discrepancies in price overall was down to the mushrooms and truss tomatoes. Foodworks pre packed mushrooms were a whopping $8.99 for 500gm where as all the other chains sat around $5-$6 with the exception of IGA which were loose cup mushrooms and we got 500 gm for $6.72.

Foodworks didn’t offer Truss tomatoes and so “gourmet” was our next best thing and our most expensive at $12 a kilo and $8.75 for 6. However if they had Truss in stock they would have been $8 a kilo. The sizes of the tomatoes varied significantly – Aldi tomatoes were very small but interestingly the price per kilo was the most expensive behind our independent stores at $4.99 a kilo. Coles and Woolworths Truss tomatoes were $3.90 & $4.90 respectively and in surprise twist Harris Farm were cheapest at $3.72.

The nitty gritty

Harris Farm didn’t offer 1kg pre packed options for onions or small white potatoes, which meant slightly more cost was accumulated here. However if we substituted the cocktail potatoes for a standard white potato we would have shaved the cost per kilo in half and Harris Farms bill would be sitting in line with both Coles and Woolworths. Harris Farm also had the cheapest and nicest looking iceberg Lettuce at $1.99. It was twice the size of Aldi’s plastic wrapped measly looking version. It was also disappointing to find that the majority of garlic bulbs in Woolies were rotten and very small.

How it breaks down

Aldi – $21.72

1 kg pack carrots – $1.79 kg
1 small white washed potatoes – $2.99
1 telegraph or continental cucumber – $0.99
1 kg brown onions – $1.99
1 iceberg lettuce –  $2.49
500g white cup mushrooms – $5.49
6 truss tomatos – $4.41
1 garlic bulb – $1.42
Bag –  $0.15

ALDI TOTAL: $21.72

Coles – $22.28

1 kg pack carrots – $2.00
1 kg small white washed potatoes – $3.50
1 telegraph or continental cucumber -$1.50
1 kg brown onions- $2.50
1 iceberg lettuce – $2.90
500g white cup mushrooms – $5.50
6 truss tomatos – $3.08
1 garlic bulb – $1.15
Bag – $0.15

COLES TOTAL $22.28

Woolworths – $23.50

1 kg pack carrots – $2.00
1 kg small white washed potatoes – $3.50
1 telegraph or continental cucumber -$1.50
1 kg brown onions- $2.50
1 iceberg lettuce – $2.00
500g white cup mushrooms – $6.00
6 truss tomatos – $4.30
1 garlic bulb – $1.55
Bag – $0.15

WOOLWORTHS TOTAL: $23.50

Harris Farm – $26.26

1 kg pack carrots – $1.99
1 kg small white washed potatoes – $6.09
1 telegraph or continental cucumber -$1.66
1 kg brown onions- $3.72
1 iceberg lettuce – $1.99
500g white cup mushrooms – $4.99
6 truss tomatos – $3.72
1 garlic bulb – $2.46
Bag – $0.00

HARRIS FARM TOTAL: $26.26

IGA – $27.82

1 kg pack carrots – $2.50
1 kg small white washed potatoes – $4.19
1 telegraph or continental cucumber -$1.99
1 kg brown onions- $2.50
1 iceberg lettuce – $2.50
500g white cup mushrooms – $6.72
6 truss tomatos – $5.67
1 garlic bulb – $1.60
Bag – $0.15

IGA TOTAL: $27.82

Foodworks – $30.36

1 kg pack carrots – $1.69
2 kg small white washed potatoes – $4.99 – (-$2.50)
1 telegraph or continental cucumber -$1.69
1 kg brown onions- $2.49
1 iceberg lettuce – $2.49
500g white cup mushrooms – $8.99
6 truss tomatos – $8.75
1 garlic bulb – $1.62
Bag – $0.15

FOODWORKS TOTAL: $30.36

The Verdict

When it comes to fresh items like fruit and veg,  there are other things to factor in other than just cost. Things like quality, freshness, availability, deals and specials, along with packaging and store layout also play a part in where you ultimately choose to shop.

While Harris Farm wasn’t the cheapest overall, it certainly delivered and stood out on freshness, quality and value for money. That said,  Harris Farm is not always an option in all areas so for us, Aldi is the overall STAND OUT for cost and convenience.

Love Veggies? Try our Veggie Nugget Recipe Here.

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