Most people expect their local village shop to be a tad pricey. It’s not surprising – small independent stores don’t have the buying power to drive hard bargains with suppliers, and they can’t afford to run loss-leaders.
Since Hawkesbury Stores opened as a community-owned business in June, we’ve been trying hard to suit the range of budgets and requirements of residents in our parish. We’ve stocked the shelves with a wider range of groceries and cut the prices of essentials – such as milk – where we can. We’ve also brought in more local, artisan and high-end products.
In time for our first meeting of shareholders in September, we thought it was time to see how our prices compare to a retail giant. We chose Tesco, as it’s the largest of the ‘big four’ supermarkets near here. Tesco Extra is in Yate, eight miles away.
We created two ‘baskets’. One with a range of day-to-day groceries (we called this our ‘Essentials’ basket) and one with a selection of the higher-end products we stock (our ‘Luxuries’ basket). Here we report the resul
ts of the first.
The ‘Essentials’ basket
The starting point for deciding on the contents for the ‘Essentials’ basket, was inspiration from a fellow community shop in Feckenham, Worcestershire. From there, we tweaked a few choices, took a trip around the Stores and the Tesco shopping app, and here are the results:
|Butter||Tesco salted butter 250g||£0.85||Best-in butter 250g||£1.30|
|Sugar||Silver Spoon granulated sugar 1kg||£0.59||Tate and Lyle granulated sugar 1kg||£0.69|
|Coffee||Nescafe Original 100g||£2.75||Nescafe Original 100g||£2.95|
|Milk||Tesco semi-skimmed 1 pint||£0.45||Cotteswold Dairy semi-skimmed 1 pint||£0.70|
|Bread||Warburtons sliced white 800g||£1.00||Braces sliced white 800g||£1.55|
|Potatoes||Maris piper 500g||£0.40||Cleaned white potatoes 500g||£0.47|
|Onions||Loose brown onions 500g||£0.37||Loose brown onions 500g||£0.50|
|Pasta||Tesco farfalle 500g||£0.59||Buitoni farfalle 400g||£0.99|
|Tinned tomatoes||Tesco Italian chopped tomatoes 400g||£0.35||White Pearl chopped tomatoes 400g||£0.40|
|Cornflakes||Kelloggs cornflakes 450g||£1.75||Kelloggs cornflakes 500g||£2.19|
|Cat food||Whiskers tin 390g||£0.65||Whiskers tin 390g||£0.75|
|Dog food||Pedigree can chunks in jelly 385g||£0.60||Pedigree can chunks in jelly 385g||£0.75|
|Toilet paper||Tesco soft toilet tissue 4 roll white||£1.75||Best-in toilet tissue 4 roll white||£1.00|
|Washing up liquid||Fairy original washing up liquid 500ml||£1.50||Fairy original washing up liquid 500ml||£1.29|
|Biscuits||McVities milk chocolate digestives 300g||£1.50||McVities milk chocolate digestives 300g||£1.75|
|Cheese||Tesco mild white cheddar 200g (£7/kg)||£1.40||Mild cheddar 200g (£8.46/kg)||£1.70|
|TESCO TOTAL||£16.50||HAWKESBURY STORES TOTAL||£18.98|
So, we were £2.48 more expensive than Tesco for a basket of ‘Essentials’.
But if you were to get the bus to Yate and back (£2.10 fare) we’d be just 38 pence pricier – and a heck of a lot quicker! – and if you pop to the supermarket in the car (costing £6.40 at 40p per mile) we’re £3.92 cheaper.
So when you need a few essentials, a trip to Hawkesbury Stores will definitely save you time, and could even save you money!