Saturday, May 19, 2012

Saving at Publix GreenWise Market

Welcome to this week's Frugal Follies Frugal Tip!

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A couple of weeks ago, I was running an errand in another nearby city when I happened to pass a Publix GreenWise Market.  I had never been inside, so I made an unscheduled stop and went in.

Since many of you are Publix fans but don't live near a GreenWise Market, I thought I'd give you a tour.  For those of you who live near one, you'll find some tips on saving at GreenWise Market at the end of this post.

After walking in, you go right into a prepared foods area.  There are freshly-made dinners, side dishes, salads, pizza, sandwiches, and believe it or not, gelato!

After that, there was an expanded bakery and deli department.  Many Publix stores have a small gourmet cheese section and a wine aisle; here at GreenWise, these two departments took up an entire corner of the store.

Here's an example of a great deal I found in the cheese section!  (Wow!  You save 90¢!)

The regular grocery aisles were quite narrow, and it appeared that there was a more limited selection of conventional items than you'd find at a typical Publix.  But there were also lots of brands of organic items.

The store had a huge selection of natural health and beauty items, like you might find at a health food store.

One thing I loved seeing here was that the store had a large selection of bulk food bins.  My Publix used to have a small selection of bulk nuts and snacks but has since removed them.  This GreenWise store had those items as well as different types of grains, beans and lentils, flours, dried fruits, granola, and lots of healthy treats.  This picture just has some of the bins - the bin area was about three times as long as I've photographed here.

And of course, the produce.  Yes, they had conventional produce.  But I was stunned to see all of the organic produce!  There was so much, I had to take two pictures!

So if you ever get to visit a Publix GreenWise store, I suggest you stop in and see for yourself!

There are currently three Publix GreenWise locations:
  • 11231 Legacy Avenue, Palm Beach Gardens, FL  33410
  • 21230 Saint Andrews Boulevard, Boca Raton, FL 33433-2435
  • 2403 West Azeele Street, Tampa, FL 33609
So now for some tips for savings -- or at least not spending too much -- at Publix Greenwise Market:

Planning your trip:
  • Publix Greenwise Market has the same Publix sales at the same prices that are available at a typical Publix store, so you won't need to make two trips to buy both organic and conventional items.  However, watch the non-sale prices, as they may be more expensive than those found at a regular Publix.  Also watch out for BOGO items - you'll still be able to buy one, get one free, but the buy one price might be more than at another Publix store.
  • Subscribe to the GreenWise magazine.  It's free, and it often comes with Publix store coupons for organic products.  Combine with a manufacturer's coupon and a sale to save even more.
  • Check the GreenWise ad to plan your trip.  This ad comes in my local paper on Thursdays.  To find it online, go to the online Publix Weekly Ad, enter the zip code of one of the GreenWise stores, and select the store.
  • Once you see what's on special, check the coupon database to see if there are any matching manufacturer or store coupons.
  • Whole Foods was a competitor to the store I visited; I would guess it would be at the other stores as well.  Check the Whole Foods printable coupons site to see if there are coupon for items you might want to purchase.  You can stack a Whole Foods coupon with a manufacturer's coupon at Publix.
  • Bring a list and stick to it.  This is standard advice at any grocery store, but it's really important here, as there are so many more temptations here than there are at a typical Publix.  And since the prices seem to be quite high on the specialty food (remember the cheese picture above?), buying items impulsively will hurt your budget even more than it will at your regular Publix.
  • Eat before you go shopping.  Again, standard advice.  But I was pretty tempted to buy gelato at 10 in the morning, let me tell you.  And they put the ready-to-eat food right there at the entrance!
  • While there, keep an eye out for coupons!  I found a couple of coupon books at the front of the store. Watch for peelie coupons on products and coupons inside packaging.
  • Use the bulk bins effectively: If you have a recipe that uses an ingredient you don't normally have in your stockpile, buy it at the bulk bins instead of buying a large package.  Yes, you may spend more per ounce.  But you'll only have to buy what you need.
  • On the other hand, check prices - it probably will be cheaper to get a prepackaged item rather than buy the same amount of product at the bins.
  • Consider buying organic only for the produce items that are most likely to be contaminated with pesticides.  Check this list from the Environmental Working Group
  • .
For more frugal tips, please go to my Linkup Parties page and check out the bloggers listed under Frugal Tips Linkups.  There are lots of great ideas on each blog and I'm sure you'll find lots of wonderful tips!

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Anonymous,  May 21, 2012 at 9:23 AM  

Thanks for this post. Rumor has it that a town nearby is getting one of these stores. Reminds me a lot of Whole Foods, which we don't have either in the Keys.

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