Monday, March 23, 2009

Holiday Loss Leaders

Have you ever noticed the pattern in grocery loss leaders around certain times of year? We both are sure a lot more aware of it now that we have our eyes on sales and coupon insert contents. The stores are trying to drive traffic with the hot items so that you buy your other day-to-day staples there as well.

Here are some of the sales and coupon promotions you can typically expect. Soda sales also fall around holidays. Some stores have 12-packs normally as high as $5+, while sale time brings prices down to $1.50-$2.50 per 12-pack.
A lot of items are nonperishables or freezable perishables, so if you have enough coupons, you can stack them with the outrageous sale prices to get free or near-free pantry and freezer stockage for months to come!

Week of sales before/around:

New Year's Eve/New Year's Day
Party consumables for ringing in the new year
'Luxury' foods like crab cakes
Other drinks and party foods

January: Week after New Year's Day
Big emphasis on weight-loss/resolution products
Boneless skinless chicken breast
Weight loss shakes
Meal replacement bars
Weight loss supplements

Super Bowl Sunday
Hors d'oeuvre and sports 'comfort foods', sodas

Triscuits/other crackers
Entertaining trays
Chicken wings

February: Valentine's Day
Love the bargains with your loved one
Wine, champagne
Beef cuts

March: St Patrick's Day
Lucky deals on Irish food
Corned beef

March Madness Deals - same as Super Bowl
Hors d'oeuvre and sports 'comfort foods', sodas
Triscuits/other crackers
Entertaining trays
Chicken wings

April-June: Easter, Mother's Day, and Father's Day
Egg hunt items, jelly beans, and chocolate (Easter)
Baskets and fake grass (CVS likely ECBs these)

May through July: Memorial Day weekend and Fourth of July
Picnic sales!
Sandwich fixings - lunchmeats, cheeses, and bread
S'mores stuff - Hershey's bars, graham crackers, marshmallows
Pie makings - fillings and crusts
Cool Whip
Berries - strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries - very freezable!

August: Back to School
All month long, school supplies coupons and coupons for new lunch-packable items

Lunch snacks/prepackaged items (applesauce, drink boxes, etc.)
Kids' yoghurts

September-October: Halloween
Candy - usually able to snatch free after ECBs at CVS
Fall produce: figs (September), butternut squash, acorn squash, apples

November-December: Holiday Feasts/Gatherings
Lots of nonperishables on sale at this point - and heavy coupon campaigns to match.
Soups and broths, for meal starters
Canned pumpkin and green beans
French friend onions (casserole toppers)
Clementines (yay!)
Sparkling ciders
Beef cuts (roasts especially)
Slow-cooker and roasting winter veggies: carrots, potatoes, leeks, onions
Pie makings - fillings and crusts
Cookie and fudge supplies, including flour, sugar, sugar substitutes, butter, chocolate chips, corn syrup, and so on.
Holiday Loss LeadersSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
Ebates and Swagbucks are both easy ways to earn rewards while doing what you normally do - web-searching through Google and shopping for bargains online!

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