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Walmart grocery shopping
© Billy Blume |

Shopping smarts: Groceries you shouldn’t buy at Walmart

Earlier this year, we saw a steady hike in prices for many commodities such as food, gas and silicon used for electronics. While things are getting better, increased prices have led many to turn to bargain shopping.

According to the USDA, food prices in March 2022 were 8.8% higher than in March 2021. Everything from eggs to meat to produce has been increasing in price. Tap or click here for our report.

In general, stores like Walmart are great for canned and packaged goods but can fall short on some other stuff. You’re better off shopping at a grocery store for money-saving and getting top-quality products like produce, organic goods, and other staples. 

Not always a great value at Walmart

People love Walmart, and loyal shoppers trust that they will always get the best prices there. Like many big-brand stores, Walmart has its own label: Great Value. While the quality may compare with other name-brand products, the price isn’t always lower.

When it comes to taste and quality, that’s really up to you. Food news website Mashed surveyed shoppers for which grocery store has the worst private label, and Walmart was at the bottom with nearly 26% of the votes.

Don’t get your produce at Walmart

A retail juggernaut like Walmart won’t be as selective as a smaller grocery store regarding produce. You’ll typically see lower-quality fruits and vegetables than you’d find elsewhere.

You can expect organic fruits, vegetables and dairy products to be pricier than non-organic products, but you’ll pay even more at Walmart. According to an article from Kiplinger, you’ll find lower prices at Aldi and Trader Joe’s.

RELATED: 10 things you should never buy on Amazon

Find these sweet staples elsewhere

Maple syrup is among the most expensive products by volume in a grocery store. Making the sweet sticky stuff is a long and pricey process. Walmart prices its maple syrup even higher.

The same goes for vanilla extract. Those little bottles are not cheap, and you’ll pay more at Walmart.

Avoid impulse snack purchases

Whether it’s cookies or chips, when you feel a snack attack coming on, don’t start filling your shopping cart at Walmart. You might find better prices on Oreos at a local grocer.

Get your beef elsewhere

Walmart’s vast selection means you can get everything you need in one trip. Who wants to go to multiple stores after all? While some prices are lower at Walmart, this doesn’t apply to everything, especially meat and fish.

You’ll pay up for meat cut offsite, not in the store itself. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a butcher at Walmart. And the quality of the meat and poultry isn’t great, according to a survey by Consumer Reports.

Finally, check unit prices

No matter where you shop, look for the price per unit, which may be measured in fluid ounces, ounces, and pounds. This will give you a better idea of a value of a product. For example, you may pay more for a larger package but pay less per unit than you would with a smaller one.

You may also like: Instacart vs. the grocery store: Surprising reason one is much better for your family’s safety

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