I live in Newfoundland and some things are expensive. For our family with 2 adults and 3 kids I spend around $800 - $1000 per month. More than my mortgage. Since I live on an island, most things are shipped here. For instance, regular price for a bag of apples is $5.99. One of those big blocks of cheese are regular price of $8.99. "Fresh" broccoli - 2.49 per head. Box of cereal - $4.99 or 5.49. I do stock up when the sales hit though. I think if I planned every meal I could maybe get it down to 750 or so but not much less than that.
We spend $600/month for 6 of us. 2adults (and dh eats a ton), 4 kids (12, 9, 7, 3). I make most things from scratch, shop sales, and it's still a struggle some months. I shop at multiple stores over the month to get the best prices on most things. Most stores I can walk to though, and the furthest is only 5km from home, so I'm not burning a ton of gas to shop around. Dairy prices are where I really notice the difference in prices vs. the US (and even Ontario is noticeably less than Quebec). Rural NB was expensive, but I assume most rural areas are compared to cities.
We live in a pretty LCOL area. For a family of 5 (and me pregnant), no pets, we usually spend about $600/month, including toiletries. That's with me cooking most everything from scratch, and buying mostly only things on sale. I don't buy much organic either. Milk here is $4.19 for 4 litres.
We are a family or 2-4 (I have my 2 kids every other week)
I don't know if Montreal is considered LCOL or HCOL (I live in the city of Montreal itself), but I typically spend $700-800 monthly on food items. Going to the Jean Talon market or buying directly from a farm would be less expensive, but I have to factor in the time consideration (I work FT, am a PT student, plus have girls who are in competitive level sports).
I scope the weekly flyers either online or that are delivered to the house, and I usually plan my meals accordingly. If chicken is on special we usually buy quite a lot, cook them up, then freeze them. We do the same with most other types of meat.
I try to avoid packaged foods as much as possible.
In terms of fruits and veggies, I try to buy them fresh from Jean Talon market as often as I can (once a month or so), and I usually prefer buying 'locally' than 'organic' that can be bought in a supermarket. Other than that, I buy from the supermarket, and try as much as I can to buy locally or Canadian.
I'd like to shave $100-$200 off of my grocery expenses, but in Quebec it is a challenge. Especially with the high cost of milk/dairy products (mind you, not as high as in the territories or farther north).
I do live close to several ethnic shops (Pakistani, Algerian, Mexican, Vietnamese, Italian) which sell items cheaper than in the supermarket. For example, at the Italian bakery down the street (which sells ready-made whole wheat pizza dough for 2 large pizzas for $2.50) they sell 400g of the REAL parmesan cheese still in its original state for $8. In the grocery store it's $13-17.
Single mama to a 5yo and 8yo
We have the same family make-up type (2 adults, 1 small dog), but we live in a high-cost of living area within our medium-cost of living city. Well medium-high... we are sorta North, so that can bring those veggie prices up to a pretty penny.
We spent approximately $400.00 a month. We are thinking of joining a food co-op because this is just becoming insane! I go to all of these frugal cooking websites, and what supposedly will cost them $10.00 to make, costs me $20!
Granted... I am only a part-time coupon clipper, but I do keep an eye on sales.
I haven't been tracking very well lately, but I spend somewhere around $1000-$1100/month. That includes non-food items, such as toilet paper, dish soap, laundry detergent, etc. There are six of us, including a teenaged boy, who takes "conditioning" (intensive PE) and gymnastics and eats a LOT.
We do eat meat. We buy a little organic, but not as much as we should. I mostly cook from scratch (although this last few months have been bad, as we've all been sick and tired and doing more "convenience" food than usual). I do keep a few packaged items around, such as grandola bars and dried fruit bars (mostly for the car, but also for my teenager, who forgets to eat a lot).
I'll spend less when dd2 is a little older. I always fall apart on all the household management stuff when I have a new baby, and it's taking me a long time to bounce back this time. But, yeah - it's expensive here. Sometimes, I read the US threads and just want to weep over how cheap the food is.
Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) , Emma (5/03) , Evan (7/05) , & Jenna (6/09)
Loving my amazing dh, James & forever missing Aaron Ambrose (11/07)
This thread has made me feel so much better. I'm sure we're between 800 and 1000 including household items and the occasional bottle of wine.
This thread makes me think we should be more creative!!! We feed a family of four (2 adults, kids ages 15 and 12) for approximately $800/month and we live in Ottawa. This includes all toiletries and things like toilet paper, cleaners, light bulbs, etc. When we first adopted our kids three years ago, we worked on a budget of $500-$650/month. Simply switching grocery stores from the L*oblaws to F*ood Basics, saves us close to $50-$75 each week! I've found that the cost of food has gone up so much over the past 3 years - meat, veggies, dairy. We shop at small stores as well. We make most of our food from scratch, but we're a bit of a foodie family and like to eat really good foodie-inspired food. We rarely eat out - maybe once a month, if that - and that comes from another budget.
DW and I are moms to two teens (DD 17 and DS 15) adopted through CAS in 2007 and a toddler (DD 2) born at home in March 2011.
In a national-Canadian context, I guess we're mid-to-high-COL; we live in Toronto. It took me a while to get used to the cost difference; I grew up/lived in the states until 4+ years ago, and fed myself and two roommates very well on $100-$150/month. (I like grocery shopping and cooking, so that was 'my job.' :) )
The last really accurate number I have is $270/month - that's close to 3 years ago, When it was DH and I plusa part-time 10/11-year old.
Now the 11YO DS is 14, we have an almost-2-year-old, and I've been pregnant or BFing (or both!) for over 2.5 years, which has affected my food intake!
Between rising prices and the growing up/expanding family, we're around $350-375/month now, I'd say. Part of that, in the past 6 months or so, has been a little more reliance on convenience foods as I've moved through various stages of fatigue w/ the current pregnancy. On a reeaallly good (inexpensive)month, I'd say we're still under $300...and a stock-up month might have us spending $500, so the above number really is just an average. For COL food ocmparison, non-org milk can be had here for $4.27/gallon, and Organic apples in season are often under $2.00/lb. (Sometimes they're the same price as non-org!) I buy apples and most leafy greens organic, and other dirty dozen produce when possible, FWIW.
We are a family of four- 2 adults (one of whom is pregnant), a 5.5yo boy & 3yo girl and one kitten. We are in Toronto, so HCOL I guess.
I budget $600/month but don't always spend all of that. Actual spending is probably more like $450. That includes all food, toiletries, vitamins. I buy as much as I can on sale, I shop at cheap stores. I make a lot from scratch, don't buy a lot of packaged foods. I don't buy a lot of organic stuff- apples usually, grapes & potatoes sometimes. And I get free eggs from my mom who has a farm with more chickens than she knows what to do with :)