As West Virginians rush to stock their pantries in response to the ongoing public health crisis, it’s more important than ever to keep our food budgets in mind. Gina Wood, specialist with West Virginia University Extension Service’s Family Nutrition Program, offers several strategies to fill your shelves while staying within your budget.


AUDIO FILE: Plan ahead

“Plan ahead. Make a menu for the week, then make a list of ingredients you’ll need to make each recipe.”

AUDIO FILE: Check your cupboards

“When making your grocery list, be sure to check for ingredients that you already have on hand in your cupboards, fridge and freezer. This helps avoid that sinking feeling you get when you discover you spent money on something you already had!”

AUDIO FILE: Look at the unit cost

“Check the unit cost of similar items to ensure you’re getting the best deal. This is where the calculator on your phone comes in handy! Just divide the total cost of the item by the number of units — ounces, milliliters, grams, etc. — to find the unit cost.”

AUDIO FILE: Coupon with caution

“Use coupons with caution. Coupons are offered mainly for national brands rather than generic or store brands. So, even with a coupon, that national brand item may still be more expensive.” — Gina Wood, specialist, WVU Extension Service Family Nutrition Program

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