Generic products are more popular than ever in the local supermarket. Generics were once shunned by most shoppers. Now, many of us head straight for the store brands.
But have you noticed? You're not always saving as much as you used to.
When grocery stores first launched generic products, back in the 1970's, they were a fraction of the price of the name brands.
But as they caught on, and went more upscale, store brands began costing more.
House brand prices jump
Fast forward to 2012: The Wall Street Journal says private label grocery items rose more than 5 percent last year, compared with just 1.9 percent for name brand food.
The report cites Target's Archer Farms brand as one such house brand. Archer Farms is so popular, that the Wall Street Journal says it's no longer offering quite the same bang for the buck.
The Journal says Archer Farms roast almonds cost a penny more per ounce than Planters roast almonds. And it says Sam's Club's house brand diapers cost more than some of the national diaper brands.
The bottom line
But what this also indicates is that some store brands are so good, they now compete on their own merits, and that's good.
If saving money is your top priority, you may have to look a little harder for the true generic or "value" brand in your grocery store, as store premium brands get more and more shelf space.
As always, don't waste your money.
Don't Waste Your Money is a registered trademark of the EW Scripps Co.
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