A.J. Shepherd

A.J. is a full-time graphic designer and wanna-be-out-of-debtor who shares money-saving ideas and tips on getting out of debt. In 2003, he found himself $40k in debt ($20k in credit cards alone) and rid himself of debt in five years. He and his friends have a website dedicated to personal finance and gaining financial independence at www.threethriftyguys.com. Read more about A.J. Shepherd.

Is Walmart Really Cheaper Than Cub?

Posted by: A.J. Shepherd under Household budgeting, Shopping, Supermarkets Updated: June 28, 2012 - 9:35 PM

I'm sure you've heard all the Walmart ads on TV, newspaper and even the radio, boasting about their lower food prices. They are even daring you to "take the test" and compare their prices against Cub Foods (which has the largest marketshare here in the Twin Cities). 

So, I decided to visit a neaby Cub Foods and then a Walmart store to compare the two. While this was not "scientific" study, it did give me a feel for the price differences. Who do you think was cheaper?

This is how I ran the test: I sampled 10 random items at each store that (I'm assuming) end up in a lot of shopper's carts. Of those, one was eliminated because I could not find the exact product at Cub. Also, I just matched - price to price - not including any coupons. I wanted the straight-up price for what I could get each item for - that day.

Here's what I discovered.

 Grocery Item  Walmart Price  Cub Price
 Ragu Chunky Garden Sauce (24 oz) $1.88  $2.29
 Kikkoman Soy Sauce (10 oz) 1.74  1.99 
Kraft Stove Top for Turkey (6 oz)  1.98 2.19 
Kraft Mac and Cheese (7.25 oz) 1.38  1.00 
Pace Picante Chunky Sauce Mild (24 oz)  2.48 3.39 
Betty Crocker Super Moist Lemon Mix (15.25 oz)  1.34 1.99 
Kelloggs Fruit Loops (8.7 oz)  2.50 2.50 
Diet Coke - 24 cans  5.98  5.99 
Ice Mountain Sport (23.7 oz)  4.98  5.00 
Totals $24.26 $26.34

So, according to my loose study - it appears as though Walmart is correct in their boast. I have to admit - I'm partial to Cub Foods - as I've grown up shopping the store and enjoy supporting a local, home-grown company.

While the price difference isn't huge - it could cause a few folks to turn their backs on Cub and shop Walmart from now on. 

Do you think the difference is enough to make the switch? Or do you have other factors (besides price) that factor into your choice of grocers?

Aaron writes at ThreeThriftyGuys.com - a personal finance site devoted to helping folks keep a few more bucks in their pockets (and purses).

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