Do you try to 'unsupermarket' your shop? Your tips wanted

Do you shop mostly at the major supermarkets (Coles, Woolworths or Aldi) or are you trying to ‘unsupermarket’ your shop by buying from alternative places?

We’d like to here your insights for an article we are creating around shopping tips for people who want to ‘unsupermarket’ their shop. What great options or services have you found, or how have you changed your behaviours in efforts to avoid shopping at Coles and Woolworths, or Aldi? (or perhaps you haven’t changed your behaviours at all?). Some examples of supermarket alternatives we have found so far include Box Divvy, Funky Food and Beyond Best Before.

We welcome all ideas, and feel free to mention any services that are local to your area you have started using. Please complete our survey and leave a comment below.


Link to survey not working. Says only available to owner




Apologies everyone - the survey is now public. Thanks for your responses!


Sorry Jen. The survey is now public, thanks for your response.

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Survey now completed.

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A reason not mentioned is that while we often tried to patronise a local, the local was usually either much higher priced or offered no better freshness/quality that we could discern for the extra dollars.

We have legions of locals who swear by, not at, a specific butcher and a particular greengrocer. Trying them more than once we went away feeling ripped off. The butcher was specifically arrogant in ‘I don’t levy a surcharge the bank does’ with a 1.5% surcharge (OK) as well as throwing whatever is next up from his display case even when asked for such grand needs like ‘2 steaks about the same size please’ and getting a rounded end cut with a middle cut. The greengrocer has what present as the same products/quality Colesworthdi has but for premium prices.


Survey done.
Our options are a little more diverse. Eggs come from the butcher, but other dairy products are spread around the small local IGA, the most convenient alternative supermarket on the day and specialty F&V.

Seafood, other than processed frozen is a treat best saved for a seafood specialist,


One of the reasons I don’t really mind the disappearance of the local butcher, or the delicatessen (or the green grocer and the seafood shop) in my suburb is the poor quality of the ‘serving’. For example the butcher would have the good cuts of meat well arranged in the trays on the display case but would pick up your order from trays on the counter behind them and if questioned would say that it was ‘all the same’ when clearly it wasn’t. Or the delicatessen would pick up a nice round leg of ham from the showcase, go to the slicer and switch to a smaller near the end piece and slice from that. I would let them know I saw the switch and walk out.
Don’t really need the stress of being ‘served’.

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We try to never buy anything we eat at Coles or Woolworths: apart from the poor stock (like tomatoes or avocados that never ripen) there is the overall concern about ethics: clearly they treat farmers badly, but then rip off their own staff with huge wage-theft cases in recent times. Then there’s the incessant FlyBys requests as spyware & which greatly limits choice according to post code.

Aldi can be a liilte better but heavily depends on postcode, some are dreadful, also the range is limited. Biggest problem is their use-by dates & needs to be checked religiously, even so, we still find new shop items to be manky when we unpack at home. At Aldi we need to check very carefully.

Otherwise we have a number of preferred shopping runs we use on different weeks, depending. Harris Farm Markets for example is very good quality, but expensive mostly. Still, we pick up a few nice things from time to time depending on what cooking we have in mind for the week.

The rest seem obvious: butcher for meat, Halal in our case; fish mongers for fish, a Japanese one in our case; a good fruit barn for the rest incl eggs, cheese, freshly baked bread - which btw is no way meant to last a week like the supermarket rubbish, most of that flour makes us ill due to the inclusion of preservatives that are banned in bread in Western Europe.

You can get practiced at this re. ‘Shopping routes’, sure, can take a little more time (& fun), sure, can cost a little more but less so as you find & refine your best favs. Anything but rewarding Coles, Wooworths & dodgy flybys. We vote with our pockets.

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l live 40 odd k’s from town so groceries are online/delivered from Woolies, works out cheaper time/fuel wise.
Meat from a large supplier in town who caters tot the commercial trade ( l buy in bulk and stack the freezer) and fruit / veg from a large store in town ( but as stated above, seems to be the same quality in that everything is perfectly formed/no defects fruit & veg and not cheap)
Egss straight from a farm

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Shop ONLY at farmers markets. Coles is good for cheap cleaning vinegar, cheap salt, bicarb. As well as Dental Care.
Sugar as I bake and I convert Sugar to Caster and Icing.
if I need cheese for cheese and mac or alike it’s coles.

Flour comes from the grower as well. I make red wine vinegar and fruit vinegars.
Body, hand wash, detergent, dishwasher powder come from an organic store.
shampoo is organic and it’s soap.

We tend to go to local fruit and vegetables vendors as a first choice and then go to the small IGA shop nearby, instead of the big three, In the past, we have been sorely disappointed with so called “fresh meat” and seen the rapid increase in the prices of the usual items we used to buy at woolies. By taking our custom elsewhere, we have let the monopolistic chains loose our spending, which was getting less every shopping
trollley full.

We buy all our fruit, veg, eggs and most meat from a simply superb fruit shop/delicatessen/butcher conveniently situated right outside Coles in our local shopping centre. Luckily we can afford to pay a bit of a premium for quality produce.
Colesworths fruit & veg are pretty ordinary. “Fresh Food people”? I don’t think so. And now ALL their red meat is prepacked. So much for cutting down on plastics.
Many of the stalls at our nearest Sunday “farmers” market are selling Friday leftovers from the Rocklea wholesale market in Brisbane. But there are a few genuine farmers there as well.

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When I did the sums this week, I realised that I just can’t afford to “unsupermarket”. I’ve found that Woolworths fruit and veg are generally of better quality than Coles, and Aldi is better than either, so if its a day when I am able to walk the supermarket aisles, I’ll generally hit Aldi first for veggies and sometimes meat, and Coles or Woolies for other stuff. Cat food comes from PetCircle or Amazon (yes, I know, should not be rewarding Bezos either but needs must.)

I’m trying to afford to buy my diabetic sensors which definitely help keep me on the level but they are so expensive… $204/month. And that means finding the cheapest option for everything else.


Yes. I don’t have time for mucking around visiting a heap of specialty stores. Ordering online is not an option.

I try to avoid Aldi because they have taken “fake brands” to the next level.

A survey on Google docs? Really? No thanks.