Woman who went from spending £100 on her food shop to under £10 shares her cost-cutting tips

A composite image of Donna Dee West and her food shop
Donna Dee West keeps her food shop to under £10 per week. (Caters)

A woman has revealed how she cut her weekly grocery shop down from £100 to under £10.

Donna Dee West, 55, from Middlesborough says she started trying to cut down how much she spent on grocery shopping after inflation caused supermarket items to rise.

She began buying yellow sticker items from stores and buys enough to last her up to two weeks. When an item has a yellow sticker on it in supermarkets, it often means that the price has been significantly reduced due to its use-by date being that day.

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“If I were to do a full food shop for the week without yellow stickers it would be anything between £80 to £100 as I like to make sure the family has a variety of fresh foods however, if I do it with yellow stickers I can easily half that and more,” she explains, adding that she can spend as little as £6 a week on her grocery shop.

“In this day and age you need to get what you can for your money. People tend to turn their noses up because of the dates on the items, many of which are that day's date but when you have fridges and freezers at home you can practically keep them fresh even longer especially freezing them.”

West adds that she has a freezer packed with a meat joint, sausages, liver, chicken, beef, mince and more which cost her just £14.

Yellow sticker grocery items
West tends to buy yellow sticker items to keep costs to a minimum. (Caters)

“I was trying to save money where I could as inflation hit bit by bit and as the gas and electricity bills were getting higher and higher, I needed to compensate and pull things back to manage the costs and I discovered yellow sticker shopping,” she explains.

“Between yellow sticker shopping and Too Good To Go bags, you don't need much more to stock up.”

Too Good To Go is an app that partners with local eateries where they can put food on the app that will run out of date that day for a heavily reduced price.

“I don't work currently due to illness, so I am saving where I can. I always stock up and then share them with friends and neighbours or cook big meals and share it amongst the street so we all get a bit of something,” West adds.

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The savvy shopper’s top tips for getting a bargain include going to Morrisons between 4.45pm and 5.30pm to find its yellow sticker deals.

“You'd be amazed at what's on offer at times, even the alcohol. I've seen wines go from £15 to £1.50 and a bunch of £20 flowers for 80p,” West continues.

“My family think it's great and it means we can have some treats we couldn't normally afford, from food items to flowers. Many reductions are 50% off and then reduced again around 7pm to 70% off so it's great when you can get a £15 topside beef for £3.30 saving £12.”

A composite image of a grocery shop and a meal
West buys mean on sale and keeps it in the freezer. (Caters)

She says she once got some Cadbury Heroes cupcakes for 80p instead of the retail price of £8, and a big chocolate gateau-style birthday cake for £1.50.

“I've now got my family and friends at it with me, so on occasions three or four of us will go together and see what we can find,” she says.

“Don't ever be shy in asking at the supermarket. You're actually saving the food from being wasted at the same time.

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“One member of staff was knocked over just bringing the reduced goods out to put on the shop floor by customers. It's a free for all and some do go mad. Our local store has a juice system where we all help each other out and if someone can't reach then someone else will pick it up for them and pass it round.

“It is a first come, first serve but sometimes there can be restrictions. For instance a few days ago, six eggs were only 35p but you were only allowed two boxes each to make it fair for everyone but things such as bread rolls are unlimited.”

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