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BULK BUYING Food 101?

Last post 12-26-2012 3:26 PM by Juneflower. 34 replies.
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  • 12-22-2012 12:38 PM

    BULK BUYING Food 101?

    I have decided to make many changes in 2013. One thing I will be embarking adventure on is bulk buying food. I honestly have NO IDEA where to begin because in the past "bulk buying" has been purchasing a few 1lb bags of this or that at a time to have on hand. I have found a reasonable resource online for ordering bulk amounts of foods I know we can use here and are at better value than the stores I am shopping each week. I would like to place my first order but want to feel stable before I spend.

    What advice can you give a complete bulk buying beginner? Where and how do I start? What to do before I buy? What to do after I buy? How to choose, prep and plan?

     RIght now I have been calculating and comparing prices to make sure that ordering each item from this site is the best value possible. I can't calculate and compare every single store in the bay area though lol so I'm sticking to the ones I know (quite a few). I'm hoping to get some advice here...

    How much comparing should I do before my final decision/order?

    Anything else I should be taking into consideration befor ordering?

    Advice on prepping and planning for a new stock of BULK dry goods (I am considering rice, cous cous, dry beans and legumes which all seem to be in 10 or 20-25lb bags... bulk red potatoes... bulk zucchini... bulk chicken which I have a freezer for and can use freezer bags to seperate and store... etc.) I am not sure how I should be storing all the dry stuff though and if storage is going to cost me the same amount it cost to even purchase the item to begin with. I don't have HUGE tupperware or bins.

    Sorry but I feel so rooky and am in a head spin not knowing what to do. I need some direction and you all know the ropes. I don't. I just don't want to make a wrong move since $ is involved and I need to start more frugal living which is why I am going to start bulk buying to help save. Any advice or encouragement is dearly appreciated.

    "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." ~Chinese Proverb~
  • 12-22-2012 12:49 PM In reply to

    Re: BULK BUYING Food 101?

    As to storage, I use lots of canning and recycled jars which I can vacuum seal with my FoodSaver. You are so food competent that you will have no trouble determining how many servings you can get from a certain size bag and how long it will take your family to use that many. AM
  • 12-22-2012 12:55 PM In reply to

    Re: BULK BUYING Food 101?

    I use a lot of gallon jars to store my dried beans in when I buy 20 pound bags. I also store rice the same way. For meat I use my vacuum sealer and the meat is good for up to a year in the freezer.
    Riley
  • 12-22-2012 1:05 PM In reply to

    Re: BULK BUYING Food 101?

    I recycle jars but they are smaller not big as I can't lift and don't want to risk breaking glass all over either. I forgot to mention I would prefer to store things all in their own container verse a bunch of random small storage... It would be easier to use 1 large container and scoop as I need it. I have seen those plastic pet food bins. Would that be a good option? I don't have a vaccum sealer... I can set up a station for bulk bin an scooping but don't want multiple glass jars or small containers taking over the pantry shelves as they are limited and need to be used for other thing too. Glass in my kitchen cabinets for small amounts is okay and what I do but for the garage storage - need a solid solution.

    I appreciate the feedback, it's making me think about these sorts o things. Thank you!!!

    "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." ~Chinese Proverb~
  • 12-22-2012 1:58 PM In reply to

    Re: BULK BUYING Food 101?

    If you are going to store it in the garage I would suggest 5 gallon food safe storage buckets with lids.
    Riley
  • 12-22-2012 2:20 PM In reply to

    Re: BULK BUYING Food 101?

    For larger quantities, I get frosting containers with lids (plastic buckets) for $2.00 each from the deli section of our local grocery. I also had them order an opener for me as the lids, once fastened, are quite secure. AM
  • 12-22-2012 3:25 PM In reply to

    Re: BULK BUYING Food 101?

    Riley, where might I find them at a reasonable price? I would have no idea where to look other than a home goods store that probably costs more...

    "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." ~Chinese Proverb~
  • 12-22-2012 3:59 PM In reply to

    Re: BULK BUYING Food 101?

    I just did a google search BB. It said that some people get them from the deli section at their local supermarket. It is what the frosting, salads and such come out of. You might see if they will save them for you. You then just have to wash them out really good. That would be the least expensive way to do it. You can order the buckets and lids online but it is a bit pricey.

    Riley
  • 12-22-2012 6:21 PM In reply to

    Re: BULK BUYING Food 101?

    THe five gallon buckets have very secure lids. They are not easy to open and some need a special tool to open. So you need to make sure that opening is not an issue for you before investing money.  Also items like bulk rice, it would be a good idea to store in your freezer for a period of time to kill any bug eggs that are in the rice. Long term storage can cause eggs to hatch so you want to kill them at the beginning.  Deli containers are often three gallon size. Maybe a better size to start with and maybe easier to open.  Plastic gallon jars are good but clearly need more room to store.   Emergency Essentials is a good website to read about good storage items.  Babs
    Officially recognized Stretchpert in Prayer Circle
  • 12-22-2012 7:50 PM In reply to

    Re: BULK BUYING Food 101?

    I buy white rice in 10 lb bags at Walmart for under $6. It will fit in the small chest freezer and i'll leave the bag in there a few days. Then, I fill up an airtight container to the top and save the leftover rice in its own bag, seal with a rubber band and tie that up in a plastic grocery sack. I guess the rice is the only bulk item I buy right now. I think it lasts us about 2 months. I may go back to buying a 5 lb bag of grits as it saves a little money.
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