Supermarket Survey

Reporter: Graeme Butler

We've been taking the pulse of prices across perth for more than a decade and for the first time in a long time some good news. The big supermarket chains have been locked in a fierce marketing and price campaign. Retail and marketing expert Barry Urqhuart, "they've been making the promise in their advertising that prices are down they're staying down there is a price battle going on they're out there the supermarkets negotiating with the manufacturers suppliers and distributors and unquestionably they're passing those savings onto the consumer"

We've selected supermarkets across the suburbs the big chains as well as the smaller independents to see how prices compare on our basket of everyday groceries we'll reveal the cheapest supermarket later. But first what have prices done since our 2009 survey - here's a selection of items in our basket.

Advance Cold Power 1kg

the Average price is Down - $1.78 since 2009

The most Expensive we found was $10.47 the Cheapest - $6.99 at a variety of woolworths stores and Supa IGA Winthrop

it's a potential Saving of - $3.48 depending on where you shop.

Colgate T/P Total (Whitening) 90-110g

Also Down - 48c on 2009 prices

the most Expensive was $5.49 the cheapest was $3.18 at Coles Galleria

that's a saving of - $2.31

Bushells Tea Cup Bags 100's

Down 0.3c

The most expensive - $6.07

The cheapest - $3.42 at Woolworths

Saving - $2.65

Crisco Oil (sunflower) 750ml

Down 0.67c

The most expensive $5.58

The cheapest $3.69 Supa IGA Winthrop

Saving $1.89

Peters ice cream Vanilla 2Lt

the average price is Down from 2009 to $1.28

The most expensive - $6.60

The cheapest - $2.99 Supa IGA Girrawheen

Saving - $3.81

Nestle Dark Cooking Chocolate 200g

UP 0.24c

The most expensive - $4.65

The cheapest - $2.97 Coles on-line

Saving- $ 1.68

Sanitarium Weet-bix 750g

Down 0.46c

The most expensive - $4.50

The cheapest - $3.00 Coles

Saving - $1.50

"Sanatarium weet-bix a saving of 50% from three dollars to four dollars fifty that some good reason to get up and have a hearty breakfast in the morning" So how do our baskets compare --- the average price this year was $82.57 compared to 2009 when the basket was $85.92 we're actually seeing a price drop - $3.35 - "The survey still highlights a number of points because not withstanding the fact that prices are down and they're down about 4 percent over 2 years which complemented with inflation during the same period of 5 to six percent represents a real saving of around 10 percent in 2 years"

This years basket saw prices range from $89.97 at the top end to the cheapest $76.64 and it wasn't one of the majors, IGA Winthrop was our cheapest overall by $13.33. "You can save $13.33 between the most expensive supermarket the least expensive supermarket in this survey which is really a ticket to the movies every week or a family of four can go to the movies once a month free of charge"

While not taking line honours if the survey was just between the two majors Coles was slightly but consistently cheaper than woolies. "Coles have made a deliberate policy of wanting to be the cheapest supermarket chain in australia and by and large across the board they've achieved that" We also compared prices on-line and it's a case of really paying for the convenience. Prices at both coles and woolies on-line were well above the in-store price including delivery fees - our basket was $94.10 at woolworths and $96.18 at Coles that's $20 more than the cheapest store in our survey.Because the take up isn't as great as the supermarkets anticipated they're finding it hard to make a profit fo the reason they have to compensate the low volume by the increased prices and margins and therefor it's a double jeopardy.

While our survey clearly shows prices are actually down - it also reveals how if you don't shop smart you can end up paying up to double the price on the same items. "The bottom line message is when you get the catalogues from the supermarkets don't dispose of them as junk mail put them aside read study them and you will save money"