Saturday 19 January 2019

Buying the Stores

I'm still rather weirdly in an almost 'backlash shopping mode'.  

After getting my hair cut the other day I called into the Co-op for some Custard Doughnuts ... I know  ;-)

The first thing that greets you when you walk in our little Co-op is the fridge with the current £5 Frozen Meal Deal, and before I even realised what I was doing I was retracing my steps and picking up a basket.

For my five pounds I got:

4 Chicken Burgers
10 Fish Fingers
2 Chicken Grills
1 456g Bag of Alphabites
1 400g Bag of Garden Peas
8 Cadbury Dairy mini Milk Cones

Typing this out has highlighted that of these six foods there are only three that I would eat.

Oh well, Alan will be very happy with his meal of chicken grills and peas ... and he'll know it's his because his name will be spelt out on the plate in Alphabites for all to see. 

Of course me being me wanted to know, albeit rather belatedly, if this actually was the brilliant bargain the Co-op claim it is.  The poster on the fridge states that the offer lasts until 22nd January and that the foods in total are worth £11.  So as soon as I got home I put the food in the freezer, put the kettle on for coffee and fired up the computer to check it out on

There I found out that it would have cost me approximately £9.70 in Tesco and £9.05 in Asda to buy the same or very similar branded foods, so it is still a good deal, but it shows me that on average our Co-op prices ... small branch, small town/large village, bit of a monopoly as the only 'supermarket' ... are slightly higher than the bigger two supermarkets.

Which for the reasons mentioned above is only to be expected I guess.

The self service checkout I used also spat this 50p coupon out at me.  Soooo ... if I was clever I could go back on the final day the coupon is valid, which should mean the new frozen meal deal is out and using my membership rewards available to nab myself a totally free basket of food plus get 50p of a meat free item to go with it.

It's all bloody temptation at the moment.   :-)



  1. Actually, it is great value if it's what you'll use (which you obviously will) and also a great time saver for when you're rushed. I love the trick with the money off voucher.

    1. Oh we'll definitely use it all, Alan has already asked for the Chicken Grills for his tea tonight. It's not something we usually have in so I guess it's nice to have a change for once.

  2. My son was telling me about this the other day, I shall go and have a look, that's a real bargain even if you put it away for the days when you don't want to mess about cooking.

    1. It is a bargain. It's usually designed as one complete meal for a family of four, but it's great to split up between a couple or to have four single meals from it for a solo diner, as everything can be split us very easily.

      I think this time the fish fingers has been included as part of the deal to bring up the value, as usually there would be a chicken option such as the grills for the adults in the family and something like the chicken burgers or chicken 'dippers' for the children.

      We've already had the fish fingers on buns for a small tea last night as we got back from a day out that had included a decent sized hot dinner. So I'm glad I got them.

  3. Not sure whether I should but this made me laugh! Ah the power of advertising. Having said that they were good bargains - and more to come to tempt you.

    1. I know ... haha :-)

      It would be VERY hard to avoid the 'offer' freezer as you walk into our Co-op ... it's smack bang in the centre opposite the little double doors that are the only way in and out. And if you HAVE managed to be firm with yourself ...just as you pass the bread there it is again laid out in an upright freezer almost asking "Are you sure you don't want me?"

  4. I've had them a few times, I don't look at the deal as a meal but items to be used with other foods. I call at the Co-op every Sunday about 1.30pm when they've done their 90% reductions (in our area) I collect membership points on the reduction and most of the time I get a 50p coupon, there's no minimum spend to use the it either. I'm still doing well on my low spend January, I've only spent £20.92 so far for 2 adults, I got more 10p item from Asda on Thursday Chicken butter masala curry(ready meal), cheese n onion rolls(like sausage rolls) 9 mini ones per pack x4 repacked in 6's, ideal to reheat with jacket potato n baked beans, So they will make 6 lovely meals, mozzarella jumbo cheese x3, 450g natural yogurt and lastly 2 lots off the fresh bakery counter 14 bread rolls, 6 croissants and 2 Danish pastries...... 11 things for £1.10 I only go as and when I need milk and bread. So I don't see spending to save as a fail Sue, I know your challenge is to use up what you have and you will deplete your stocks......but why pass on by when you see a bargain xx

    1. No we wouldn't use the items as a single meal either,although I can see why a busy family with two children and not much time (or inclination) to menu plan might.

      I needed the peas as I had just used the last of ours, the Alphabites will simply be used in place of boiled potatoes in a meal (although the temptation to spell out our names will be too great to miss). We have already had the fish fingers on buns for a quick tea as mentioned above, and Alan has asked for the Chicken Grills with a pasta dish, as he likes only a little bit of pasta with a good portion of a protein source, so these will most likely both be used in one meal for him.

      I guess the Chicken Burgers will be used for another 'snacky' type tea, on buns for Alan while I have some of the veggie burgers that I already have in the freezer.

  5. For roughly 7.50CDN that is a fantastic buy. The peas alone would be roughly $1.99, the ice creams anywhere from $3.99 to $6.99. Frozen potatoes are always around $3 a bag. Fish Fingers roughly $4.99

    1. Oh wow!! Your food prices are high, but then again aren't your wages and pensions also at a higher level in general than ours. I know when we looked into moving over to Canada with Alan's job the research we did showed this, but this was back in 2006 so my information could be very out of date.

      I bet you have to make sure you get every pennies worth out of everything you buy, I know I would.

  6. LOL! Just realised who you are ......... I have missed your other blog, been reading this with no idea until today when I clicked on a side bar on someone else's blog. Sneaky but funny! Re the Co-op deals, I do occasionally buy them but I'm a bit of a foodie snob in that I won't buy 'fish' fingers, I like to know what kind of fish, happy to buy haddock or cod ones. Ditto on the chicken thingies, I only eat 'proper' meat. You do have to be careful on their deals though, I've noticed that sometimes you can't get a like for like comparison as the packaging size is a bit different, e.g. you might get a 540g pack of branded peas in the Co-op deal whereas other shops only sell 610g packs. I'm guessing the Co-op get them packs made up specifically for them. Having said that though, they're a really good idea for family eating, my niece buys them for Saturday night in treat teas for her boys. I only usually buy when pizza is the main item. We've got two Co-ops literally within 10 feet of each other! One is a Central Co-op, one seems to be Manchester based (I'm in the Midlands). I flit between the two as one sells milk cheaper than the other but both have good end of day mark downs. Had to buy bread at full price the other day and was shocked as I'm used to only spending about 50 - 65p for a good quality loaf.

    1. There is nothing sneaky involved ... I just wanted and needed to blog under a different format and have less of a following. My other current blog came before this one and started early last year, but Challenges didn't seem right for that one so this blog was born.

      If you wish to continue commenting as 'Anonymous' please at least sign off with your first name, as per the appeal below the comment box. Thank you.


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