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Name brand vs Generic

Last post 08-30-2012 9:45 AM by Kassy. 44 replies.
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  • 07-02-2008 12:05 PM

    Name brand vs Generic

    What has your experience been with generic items vs name brand. Include all canned goods, personal care items, medicines and prescriptions and whatever else you can think of. How does the quality compare? Is there any item you won't buy generic in? Where do you get most of your generics from?
    Officially Recognized Stretchpert in Stages of Life
  • 07-02-2008 12:32 PM In reply to

    Re: Name brand vs Generic

    I have had family members work in plants that can/jar/package foods.  They said they ran the same products for both name brand and generic -- all they did was stop long enough to change the packaging.  

    With a little work you can figure out who makes your generic.   Some will tell you right off who makes their store/generic brand, others you have to work a little at it.  Some will have the same jar with different labels.  Look for clues then do a little research.

     Sign up for all the recall lists.   When there is a recall, you will see the maker/name brand listed then all its generics/store brands.

    You teach people how to treat you -- Dr Phil
  • 07-02-2008 12:33 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-28-2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Name brand vs Generic

     I was buying less generic foods. When we moved, I found a store that carries many products made right in the state. I feel better supporting local companies. I also prefer products that have natural ingredients and many generics don't offer this.

    I did step away from this plan over the last couple of weeks so we could cut expenses during a tight time.


    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager

  • 07-02-2008 12:39 PM In reply to

    Re: Name brand vs Generic

    I purchase just about everything generic.


    To me there really isn't much difference.


    About the only thing that I refuse to purchase generic are feminine items. 

  • 07-02-2008 12:50 PM In reply to

    Re: Name brand vs Generic

    I generally buy most meds, prescriptions, etc. generic. When it comes to food, it just depends. If I can get the name brand on sale as cheap as the generic I almost always go name-brand. If not, I generally go for generic. Most food items taste the same to me but there are a few exceptions I've found. My husband loves saltine crackers. He swears that the generic taste horrible compared to the name brand. Also, I generally buy name brand canned and frozen veggies (I buy them almost only when on sale, though, and stock up). I grew up eating fresh veggies and so eating canned veggies is a tough one for me to start with... so I would prefer to buy the better brands.

    One thing I LOVE generic is pizza sauce. I keep in the pantry because (for a cheap and easy meal) we make french bread pizza a lot. Well, at our Walmart they have a Ragu pizza sauce and a generic one. The generic is about 20-30 cents cheaper and it taste better to me. I also buy the generic shredded cheese since we use so much of it and it's such an expensive item... and I find that it taste just as good as the name brands.

    When it comes to diapers, it just depends on the store. I've tried white cloud at WalMart (not sure if that's considered generic, but it's cheap!) and I hated them. I tried a few other store brands and hated them too. But just recently I tried CVS and found they were great. Diapers, whether name-brand or generic, is one thing I don't go cheap on for the sake of being cheap. I buy what works: whether the "cheap" brand or name brand.

    God bless,


  • 07-02-2008 1:51 PM In reply to

    Re: Name brand vs Generic

    Meds: not all generics are the same. I use generic for as many as I can (I am only on two, thank goodness), but the generic for my thyroid condition is *not* the same as the brand-name I need to use. The generic is for Snythyroid, which contains no t3. I need to use an Armor-type, which does contain t3, because it's actually my adrenal glands that are the problem (it just manifests as hypothyroidism). Insurance does not differentiate between this, and so I have to pay full price for my meds even though the "generic" is not the same and therefore will not work for me. That said, most medications are fine as generics in my experience. 

    We buy very few processed/convenience foods all around, so usually generics don't come into the picture because of HFCS. In some foods, I'll buy generic, in some I won't. The ones that I won't are usually because they are generics that contain ingredients that I don't like in any products, such as high sodium, processed soy products, or HFCS.  I definitely buy generic dry goods if I am not purchasing organic: lentils, beans, grains, flours, etc. If I am not purchasing them local or organic, there is no point paying a mint for them, either. If I am purchasing store cheeses that aren't organic, I'll definitely buy generic. Same is true for condiments (pickles, mustard, etc.). This isn't true for ketchup, because I have yet to find a generic that doesn't contain HFCS. 

    I buy generic computer paper supplies, but not ink. I'd love to purchase cheap ink, but becasue I print my own business items I need them to look professional and honestly I get far better results with brand name.  I do not purchase generic feminine products or TP (ouch!).

    "This isn't life in the fast lane, it's life in oncomming traffic." -Terry Pratchett

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  • 07-02-2008 3:38 PM In reply to

    Re: Name brand vs Generic

    2ndGenGranola - Thank you for the tip. It helps to have insider knowledge.
    Officially Recognized Stretchpert in Stages of Life
  • 07-02-2008 3:55 PM In reply to

    Re: Name brand vs Generic

    We have no problems using generic/store brand in my house with a few exceptions:

    • fem products for me
    • scott tissue -- everyone likes it and a single roll lasts over a week; that means my twelve pack lasts at least 4 months on average
    • spaghetti sauce -- specifically, my husband will NOT eat Food Lion spaghetti sauce; so we wait for a brand to go on sale for $1/jar and stock up what we need for the next few months.
    • Cheez-its -- I've tried generic and can't find one I like and since it takes me a month to go through one box, I don't sweat it.
    • cheese cubes -- my daughter eats these and at first I thought she was just saying she didn't like them b/c the packaging was different.  So one night I switched stuff around and made sure she saw me take the cubes (generic) from a brand name bag.  But she didn't like them.  So I switched back to name brand.  Later a new generic came out and those she likes.

    Everything else I purchase is up for grabs.  I generally go with whatever is least expensive when coupons, if available, are factored in.

    Generally I shop at Food Lion for the bulk of my purchases, but I have a Wal-Greens, Target, Kroger, Farm Fresh, 2 Wal-Marts, Super K-Mart, and a farmers market all within a 3 mile radius of my home and if the price is right and it's on my way or in a shopping/errand loop, I will stop for literally just 1 or 2 sale items.

    Officially Recognized Stretchpert in the General forum
  • 07-02-2008 4:28 PM In reply to

    • bluesong
    • Top 200 Contributor
    • Joined on 06-20-2008
    • Portland, Oregon
    • Posts 260

    Re: Name brand vs Generic

    OK I have to ask a silly question. What is HFCS ?

  • 07-02-2008 4:32 PM In reply to

    Re: Name brand vs Generic


    OK I have to ask a silly question. What is HFCS ?



    Yeah, what bluesong said, only louder!   Big Smile    


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