RVA Deals

In addition to our picks for the best deals around town this week, we’re starting off a series on tips and tricks to help you save at local grocers. This week: Ellwood Thompson’s.

This is the first in a series profiling savings tips for various grocery stores around RVA, and I’m starting with Ellwood Thompson’s market (4 N. Thompson Street). I don’t mention Ellwood’s very often in this column, but any Richmonder who’s made a resolution to eat naturally/organically/locally is certain to be familiar with it.

Here are some of the umpteen ways to stretch your dollar when shopping at Ellwood Thompson’s:

Monthly Sales – Instead of a weekly schedule, Ellwood’s publishes its sales flyer monthly. You can sign up for the mailing list to receive updates via email. In January, organic navel oranges are $.69 each, and Stacy’s pita chips are 2 for $4.

Double Coupon Tuesday – Every Tuesday, Ellwood’s will double the value of manufacturer’s coupons up to 75 cents. Look for Mambo Sprouts and Healthy Clippings booklets in the store, and check manufacturer websites for printables.

– Shelf tags which stand for Ellwood Thompson’s Values. Everyday values on staple items.

Envirocredit – Get $.25 off your purchase for riding your bike, scooter or moped; walking; taking the bus; or skateboarding to Ellwood Thompson’s

Bring Your Own Bags and Containers – And save $.10 per bag and bulk container used. (You can get your containers weighed while empty to avoid paying any extra for your bulk purchases)

Buy In Bulk and By the Case – Ellwood’s carries 1095 products in bulk, so you can buy exactly the amount you need. Also, receive a 10% discount on case purchases or mix-n-match cases of wine.

Twitter/Facebook specialsBecome a friend of Ellwood Thompson on Facebook or follow Ellwood’s Twitter page for periodic daily specials, then just mention it to the cashier at checkout. Recent examples include $.99 baguettes, $.79/lb sweet potatoes and $5.99/lb hot bar.

Happy Hour Hot Bar
– Happy Hour is when the hot bar/salad bar/raw bar are discounted for the last hour of the day to $5.99/lb (8-9pm).

Most of this information is contained in a nifty little brochure the store publishes called “Ways to Save.” Look for a new edition available soon (the last one had a $10 off $50 purchase coupon!).

I’ll readily admit I’m not an Ellwood’s expert; I’m still learning my way around buying locally and organically. So how do YOU save at Ellwood Thompson’s? Any frugal strategies I’ve missed? What products are a great value?

Capitalizing on New Year’s resolutions to eat healthier, look for lots of sales on “healthy” products at the stores this week. For instance, there are deals on Special K pretty much everywhere as well as oatmeal, vitamins, low-cal frozen meals, and bottled water.

Meat Top Pick

Perdue boneless chicken breasts are $1.88/lb at Ukrop’s, while Tyson drumsticks and split chicken breasts are $.98/lb at Kroger

Veggie Top Pick

Pint of organic grape tomatoes $1.99 at Whole Foods

Fruit Top Pick

$2.50 for 1-lb packages of strawberries at Ukrop’s and Kroger

Dairy Top Pick

Stonyfield organic fat-free yogurt is 10 for $5 at Whole Foods. At Kroger, Breyers yogurt is $.40, and Dannon and Yoplait are $.50

Staples Top Pick

$1.25 cans of light and high-fiber Progresso soup varieties at Kroger. Use “$.50 off 2” coupons from last Sunday’s paper, or $.50 e-coupon from Cellfire to make them $.75-$1 a can

Snacks & Sweets Top Pick

Bargain nuts at Ukrop’s: Cans of Planter’s mixed nuts and cashews are $1.99 with coupon from the Savings Spot (limit 10). I found $1 off peelie coupons on the lids, so the final cost was $.99 a can! Kroger peanuts are also $1.

Beverage Top Pick

$.48 Big K 2-liter soft drinks at Kroger

Household Top Pick

150-count Food Club sandwich bags are $.50 at Ukrop’s (the fold-top kind, not the zip-top)

Find more deals by accessing the stores’ weekly ads online:

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Alison Brown

Check out more of Alison’s stellar cost-cutting tricks and tips over at Richmond Bargains or follow her on Twitter. Your wallet is sure to thank you.

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