Did you know Australia's two biggest supermarkets monopolise 70% of the grocery market?
This doesn't leave much for local and smaller independent retailers.
How to go supermarket free
May is Supermarket Free month - an initiative to encourage the community to support local businesses by shopping outside of the big retailers.
We share a few tips to help you get involved and tweak your shopping habits.
Write a list
Write a list of the items you typically purchase at the supermarket. You can be broad and list the categories or highlight individual items that are important to your household shop.
Locate your local grocers
Find your local veggie shop, butcher, deli, bakery and chemist. Locate your nearest bulk food store where you can purchase your dry goods such as rice, pasta, nuts, seeds and baking ingredients.
Don't forget us! We have a variety of food, home and personal care products. Our refillary also stocks ingredients to make your own self-care and cleaning products.
Get familiar with your market dates
Get familiar with your local farmer market dates. Often these are schedule on the first or last day of the month. Knowing when they are can help you with your shopping regime.
Shop at a farm gate
A lot of farmers sell their produce at the gate of their properties. You'll often find farm gate stores with eggs, fruit, veggies, meat, honey and flours.
Live in the city? You may be surprised at how close local farmers are to your home. Some even have some set ups in suburban streets.
Grow your own
You may not be able to get a thriving produce garden within the month, but you can grow some foods relatively quickly.
Items like herbs, lettuce, spinach, beet greens, bok choy and green onions can be ready for harvest in less than a month.
Embrace seasonal eating
At the supermarket you'll find a variety of fresh produce all year around as they have the ability to freeze out-of-season foods.
You local fruit and vegetable shop may not offer you out-of-season berries, asparagus or citrus fruits.
Start learning to cook and eat seasonally so that you can enjoy the best produce and expand the variety of the foods you consume.
Get a box
Produce boxes are a great way to buy locally grown, fresh produce and cut down your shopping time.
You can now get boxes delivered to your doorstep that include fruits, vegetables, whole food ingredients, meat and personal care products.
Subscription services are also a great way to go supermarket-free. Again, you can get subscriptions on all sorts of products - the most well known being newspaper, magazines and toilet paper!
Subscribing typically saves you money as well as increases your efficiency.
Up your cooking skills
A lot of food purchased at the supermarket is convenient food. Not only are we opting for pre-made or packaged food because it saves time, but in some cases, its due to a lack of cooking knowledge.
Why not jump right in and make it a priority to up your cooking skills or fuel your interest in cooking?
Purchase a cook book or enrol in a cooking class. Pick one thing you want to learn more about such as baking sourdough, fermenting food or baking?
Use what you have
Open your pantry and see what you have already. This May, focus on using the ingredients you already have. Most people will have dried lentils or beans, tinned veggies or flours.
In the freezer, you're likely to have some frozen peas or maybe even some meat or a meal.
Get creative with what you have before you go shopping.
Host a "bring a plate" event
Food is as much about socialisation as it is substance. Why not encourage others to join your supermarket-free pledge and invite them to a "bring a plate" event?
It's often easier to stick to a goal or challenge if you have people doing it with you.
Ready to make your Supermarket Free This May pledge? Click here!