In an effort to investugate and confirm comments aired by one of our local councillors in the Hebden Royd council meeting on 28th January, we decided to instigate a grocery price survey. Considering the usual common sense and plain speaking of our representative, we were very surprised by our findings.
We looked at the prices of 23 typical foods in Oasis, One Stop and the Co-op in Hebden Bridge, as well as Sainsbury’s Local in Mytholmroyd to give an idea of what the proposed new ‘Sainsbury’s Local’ store might have to offer.
Our ‘basket’ contained what we hoped was a fair selection of everyday purchases: a brown sliced (800g) loaf, 6 eggs, 1 litre semi-skimmed milk, 2kg potatoes, 500g carrots, a tin of tomatoes, 500g pasta, a tin of Heinz beans, 250g cheddar cheese, 3 apples, 3 oranges, 3 bananas, 100g salad leaves, 1kg washing powder, 500ml washing up liquid, 4 toilet rolls, 350g chicken pieces, 250g bacon, 250g pork sausages, 500g Kellog’s corn flakes, 1kg white sugar, 100g coffee, 100g tea. Some of these pack sizes don’t exist in some of the shops, but in every case we picked the cheapest option available and did the maths to make the quantities equal.
Of the 23 products surveyed, Sainsbury’s was cheapest on four items (eggs, milk, tinned tomatoes & cheap instant coffee), One Stop (milk, spuds, cheese, oranges, salad leaves, washing up liquid & bacon) and Oasis (carrots, frozen peas, washing up liquid, toilet rolls, kellog’s corn flakes, white sugar & tea) were both cheapest on 7 items in the basket – but the Co-op was cheapest on 10 of the items (brown sliced loaf, milk, pasta, Heinz baked beans, apples, bananas, washing powder, toilet rolls, chicken pieces, and pork sausages).
Overall, the same basket cost most at Sainsbury’s in Mytholmroyd (£35.46) then One Stop (£34.84), then Oasis (£34.23). then cheapest, by quite a margin, £28.58 at the Co-op. This is £6.88 (or 24%) cheaper than Sainsbury’s.
We also found that a further £3.94 could be saved on the Co-op price if all items were bought where they could be found cheapest.
Whilst we are sure the nay-sayers will find fault with our method, we are sure the facts speak for themselves. Let there be no doubt, a new Sainsbury’s ‘Local’ in Hebden Bridge, as well bringing traffic chaos and helping to destroy local jobs, character and vitality, will not be providing cheap food.