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Thread: Short date groceries, any tips?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    15,313

    Default Short date groceries, any tips?

    Long post but I want to explain fully before asking about sourcing cheap supplies so you can see what we do now, otherwise I'm wasting everyone's time getting them to suggest what we are doing now or suggesting items that we can't keep to our price point of 50p

    Myself and two colleagues have set up a tuck shop at our railway station mess room. Basically we have a small drinks type glass fronted fridge with cans and chocolate and flapjacks, a box alongside with crisps, we do some healthy options like Aldi choc covered rice cakes, we've tried healthy snack bars and lighter crisps but they don't go well.

    Cans we buy from Farmfoods (three trays of 24 for 16), we also buy the 2 x
    18 packs of Diet Coke from Farmfoods 9, so makes a tidy 25 to use a 2.50 off voucher. Flapjacks we buy the Higate 29p ones from Home Bargains a box (30) at a time, choc the 4 for 1 packs available off and on at most supermarkets, crisps mainly the multipacks 25g packs (we've eyed up the 40 packs in Farmfoods for 4 but prefer to pay a bit more and have more choice as storage is a bit limited.

    We also buy one offs when we see them - e.g. I caught it right with mini eggs 90g packs when Asda were selling them at 25p - we got two boxes of 24 and they have gone in just over a week. Yep wish I had bought more now but it's only been going a month so we are on the cautious side.

    I saw "Real" Jalapeno 35g packs of crisps 8 for 1 with two months date on at a street market and so bought 24. Home Bargains had Burtons Fish and Chips 6 packs a while back IIRC 39p three for 1 - I bought 6 packs and did them two (inner) bags for 50p. They flew out. Went back next day - all gone!

    It's on a trust basis - we have a metal locked letterbox on the wall. We have a tall locker for storage but also end up with stuff in boots of cars and sometimes at home.

    Everything is sold for 50p. Crisps make up to 40p profit, cans around 30p, choc 25p and flapjacks 21p. Overall we are making nearly 60% margin and taking 12-20 a day. So it's successful. Shrinkage is surprisingly minuscule.

    The aim is to provide a good snack service but the profits will all be used initially to improve facilities but later to possibly make charity donations to small local charities.

    Anyway.... I needed to explain what it's all about, how we do it now and how we source stock before asking the question....

    I've looked at Approved Foods many times and not really found anything. I've emailed Higate on Friday about buying in bulk direct, I'm awaiting a reply, but most other suppliers of Flapjack seem to be more than the 29p we pay in Home Bargains. Crisps we manage fine with and choc seems ok 4 for 1. So we are doing ok to be fair but I do think we could do well with short dated items, as turnover is quite good. I also like bargains like the mini eggs as it creates some extra interest. I've looked at a cash and carry but prices don't seem that good. Question is - is there any people like Approved Foods that do short dated stuff at keen prices? I did see packs of Pepsi cheap in Poundstretcher as we started up, which had a month left on them - kicked myself for not buying those.

    Basically if there is any trick we are missing I'd really appreciate any ideas. I think I'm quite savvy and we are doing ok as we are, but when I see street traders selling say the Real Crisps so cheap I think "they are making money on those so where do they get them? I appreciate Home Bargains and Poundstretcher would be buying wagon loads, but I'm sure there are opportunities I'm missing?
    Those who think they know it all are very annoying to those of us who actually do.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    Home made sells very very well.

  3. #3

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    I had a box of Kit Kats next to some home made bread pudding. Bread pud sold more than the Kit Kats. Although in fairness the bread pud needed to be sold out because this DOES NOT have a good shelf life. However a small amount of home made on show usually overtakes bought stuff. If its nice that is !!!!!!

  4. #4

    Default

    our friend uses something called clearance xl but more for food
    but after looking i'm not sure its any help for you, the cheapest i'v seen really is pound stretcher, ours has a lot of offers on drinks, they also have short dated stuff reduced to clear

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    Default

    Thanks for your help so far folks. Home made isn't an option as it raises issues with food hygiene but more to the point this is already taking up a lot of time buying stuff - to make home made would involve buying ingredients plus extra time making / cooling / packing etc that's not going to happen. Appreciate if I had the time yes there would be possibilities there though. Thank you.

    I'll have a look at the clearance site you mention. I've only looked in Pound-stretcher once (but did see the cheap Pepsi I've kicked myself over not buying! Will look again tomorrow.
    Those who think they know it all are very annoying to those of us who actually do.

  6. #6

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    ours has a small section of reduced to clear, but has far more offers on drinks than home bargains (they are next door to each other)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    Went to Poundstretcher this morning and bought 500ml bottles of Pembrokeshire water that look a lot better quality than the Cristaline ones at HB's, reduced to 10p. Curiously the dates were 2019 and the packs of 6 are 79p (also 2019). In the end I asked them for a strong box and bought 50 of the loose 10p ones, although will probably get another 50 if I get a chance to get back there in time.
    Those who think they know it all are very annoying to those of us who actually do.

  8. #8

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    oh brilliant glad i could help (i never buy much in there but noticed they always have lots of energy type drinks going cheap)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    1,820

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    Costco have 40 bottles of water for 3.34 . 8 and a bit pence per bottle. Half price for around 2 more weeks.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    But then you have membership cost, Vat plus there isn't one near here anyway.
    Those who think they know it all are very annoying to those of us who actually do.

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