Another Walmart discovery

Posted by: benjammin

Another Walmart discovery - 02/20/09 02:17 PM

I know not everyone is convinced that vitamin supplements are the bomb, but there are some foods that warrant consideration nonetheless.

I have always been a fan of Total cereal. It just works for me, what can I say. My only problem is it is usually one of the most expensive cereals on the shelf. Not that I am a big cereal eater, but I do use it in other recipes from time to time, especially my ranger cookie recipe.

Anyways, while strolling down the isle at the local Walmart, I was considered replenishing my stock with another box. As I thought it over, I noticed a Walmart generic sitting nearby. A quick comparison indicated that the nutritional content was pretty much identical, but the cost was about 1/3. Going from 28 cents an ounce to 10 cents an ounce makes this purchase consideration extremely appealing for me. I bought four boxes, and may go back and get more. I suspect this is not a one shot deal, but likely a durable discount, and given the threat of what may come, stocking up on something with a fairly decent nutrition profile at a fairly good price seems like the thing to do.

Just thought I'd pass on my discovery. They are called "Fortified Bran Flakes" or something close to that, and not stocked right next to the Total necessarily.
Posted by: justmeagain

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/20/09 02:49 PM

Nearly every brand-name cereal can be found in a generic, house brand form. Your local supermarket may have something similar as well. I love grocery shopping to look and compare products both price wise and from a nutritional content.
Posted by: comms

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/20/09 03:06 PM

Look, people can bash Walmart but I am a fan. My weekly shopping bill at Safeway and Albertsons hovered at +/- $225. When I switched to Walmart that weekly bill dropped to around $150. That's a saving of around $300 a month on my food bill.

I defy anyone to write down prices of their usual weekly buys and purchase those at WM, you will be stunned at the price difference. Then as BenJammin states quite clearly, their Great Value and Sams Club brands save you even more.

The great find for me as it relates to preparedness-- their Ozark brand of outdoor gear sells 2 chem lights for $2. best price I have ever found on them.

Usual disclaimers, not a employee or own stock. Just a shopper.
Posted by: benjammin

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/20/09 05:07 PM

Well, I won't go so far as to say everything house brand at WM is as good as the name brand stuff. I've got bit a couple times thinking the difference wouldn't be so noticable. Generally they do okay, stuff like this is hard to compromise much on. Often enough it is worth getting the house brand and their price on name brand is also lower in enough cases to make it worth shopping at WM more often than the other places. Caveat Emptor, but also be frugal.

It's a balancing act.
Posted by: Todd W

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/20/09 05:09 PM

Some of the stuff that has identical nutrition specs taste like dirt compared to GOOD tasting food though too wink

I can't stand generic bread... OroWheat I think is what we get.. oh-so-yummy and its like 3.95 at wal-mart but 2.5 at Winco and like 4.xx at grocery outlets. BIG difference.

Eggs, Milk, etc we get generic.

Cereal... I eat hot cereal, quaker oat tall cylinders smile

Posted by: scafool

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/20/09 05:38 PM

I always check out the house brands.
Sometimes they are just as good, sometimes they are better and sometimes they are noticeably inferior.
The thing is that I buy one package of whatever it is to compare it with the national brand when I am shopping.

Posted by: JohnE

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/20/09 06:45 PM

I've never heard anyone bashing Wal-Mart due to their low prices, it's what they do at the corporate level to be able to offer those low prices that gets the bashing.

Ask the folks at Rubbermaid how they liked their experience selling products to Wal-Mart.

Read Barbara Ehrenreich's book "Nickel and Dimed" to get a perspective on working for Wal-Mart.

Posted by: Eugene

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/20/09 08:29 PM

I've found that in the city where WalMart doesn't have a monopoly their prices are no cheaper than other stores overall. They may have a couple good deals but the other stores do too.
Posted by: rescueguru

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/20/09 08:34 PM

Hi guys, The bread is most probably baked in the same bakery, the milk processed in the same dairy, and etc. I just picked up a vitamin supplement for my mom this afternoon at a big box store, same composition, same number of tablets, sitting side by side on the shelf, one name brand and one generic. Cost difference - $5.09. If the quality proves to be the same, the rest is a no brainer. smile
Posted by: Dagny

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/21/09 12:14 AM

Great discussion!

I buy Harris-Teeter house brands at every opportunity -- from cereal, to laundry soap, chipotle salsa and cocoa.

Recently went to a Wegman's for the first time -- bought two of their house brand cereals and loved them.

Name brand prices are inflated by marketing costs.

Posted by: Art_in_FL

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/21/09 05:20 AM

Good call.

I used to mix total into my gorp. Helps keep me regular.

Laugh if you want but constipation and irregularity are major problems in any emergency. They are pretty common when your forced to change food and living habits. Being constipated or burdened by diarrhea in an emergency, when you really want and need to be at your best, is a miserable experience. It is hard to show off your preparedness, expertise, and survival planning to good effect when your on the ground doubled up and turning green.

Bran flakes, and another of my favorites, oatmeal, can help keep everything moving.
Posted by: Susan

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/21/09 05:39 AM

WalMart tells the VENDOR what they will pay them for a product, and they can deal or not. I am forced to shop there due to my extremely meager income, and they've basically forced most of the other businesses in the area out of business.

I see over time that they are stocking more and more of less and less, like they're down to two brands of shampoo. Apparently, more vendors are opting out of dealing with them. But Americans will buy virtually anything if it's cheap enough, even though it's worthless junk that falls apart in a couple of days.

Posted by: LeeG

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/21/09 08:19 AM

Like most things, it pays to do research ahead of time. I like the denim jeans from Walmart/Sam's Club, but I wouldn't buy my shoes there.

While I am talking stores, if any of you have the Fresh & Easy chain of stores nearby, I highly recommend them for fresh food. They are the US chain of stores owned by the UK company Tesco. My wife and I have been getting most of our non-bulk food from there for several months and it is very good.

Posted by: MedB

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/21/09 12:26 PM

Funny you mention shoes.... perhaps the worst shoes on the planet are available at Wally World. Comfort is poor, quality is low, and many times they aren't even close to the right size (ie size 11 label fits like a 9 or a 13). Not sure where they get them, but I used to keep trying to find something there for my kids or myself; finally gave up.
Posted by: Desperado

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/21/09 03:31 PM

Two things I learned in the Army that apply in the civilian world: 1. How to clean a toilet. 2. Always take care of your primary form of transportation (feet). As an addendum to #2, I added never buy cheap shoes. I will skrimp on just about anything else, but not shoes. They may not be stylish, but they will be good quality and fit propperly. With kids this is hard due to growing feet, but in the long run their feet will be better for it.
Posted by: nurit

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/21/09 04:02 PM

"Read Barbara Ehrenreich's book "Nickel and Dimed" to get a perspective on working for Wal-Mart."

A terrific book!

The full title is "Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America."

As a journalist Ehrenreich took a long-term assignment in 1998 to find out what it really means to live on minimum wage. For months she worked minimum-wage jobs (waiting tables, cleaning houses, and working for Wal-Mart) in different parts of the country.

Her account of the day-to-day struggle to exist is written in such vivid detail that I couldn't put it down.

Posted by: JohnE

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/21/09 05:04 PM

You're right about the sub-title, thanks for including it. I have a thing about the trend to make the titles of books so long so I tend to drop out the subs.

It is a very good book, Ehrenreich is writing about things that affect all of us eventually. I'm curious to see what she'll have to say about the current financial "crisis" that the U.S. finds itself in.

John E
Posted by: benjammin

Re: Another Walmart discovery - 02/22/09 12:19 AM

I was raised to be frugal. My step-dad was king of the frugals. I think he might've been from frugal rock or something. Anyways, I appreciate a good deal, but I still look for quality. I don't shop exclusively at Wal-Mart, but they are competitive enough that they make it worth going to visit regularly. I also do Sam's Club and Costco. In fact, all my jeans are from Costco. They're Kirkland brand jeans fit me almost perfectly, cost me about $13 a pair, and last for years.

Retail is almost as cutthroat as the construction business. I am not going to fault someone for getting it right, reading the consumer base like a dime novel and getting their supply line to do just what they want. They figured out the formula and they are working it, and that is the name of the game. If someone else can beat them and provide us all with a better product, service, and price, then I will gladly go pay them a visit and give them my business instead.