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Know what you need to buy to save time

Atasa Moceituba
Friday, November 03, 2017

YOU won't waste countless minutes wandering around the supermarket debating on what sounds good if you know what you need to buy.

This is true for the Delana family of Davuilevu Housing who make sure they scan their cupboards, refrigerator and most importantly jot down what they need before they head out to shop.

Groceries shopping for the seven-member family is done weekly.

Television producer at the Fiji Broadcasting Corporation Jolame Cagi said their food list included dhal, toiletries, 10kg sugar, flour, rice, and canned stuff such as four tinned fish, two small corned beef, spaghetti, baked beans for the kids' lunch, Weet Bix, milk and at least two cans of tomato sauce, potatoes, onions, garlic, oil, soy sauce, noodles, liver, sausages, fish and a tray of eggs to name a few.

He said they always read the newspaper and watched TV ads because they featured specials that most people didn't know.

"Our list would always have palau masala ingredients because palau is usually a pay week Friday treat at home. My sister makes good palau, not as good as my mum's (God rest her soul) but her pot of palau is delicious too," Cagi said.

Palau was a dish his mother used to cook for them when they were small growing up in Navua.

He spends $80 to $100 on shopping and the groceries bought could last the family until the next pay or the day before pay.

"Since we have different pay weeks at home, if there is a shortage in any area, they top it up to last until my next pay. This allows us to have that extra cash for ourselves as well."

Cagi said vegetables were bought from the market and he preferred to buy it on the day they planned to eat it because that way it would still be fresh otherwise everything was optional. "I go for the essentials first because we can pretty much live without the non-essentials. Times are hard we need to prioritise."

He said they were blessed to have family who brought food such as tavioka, dalo and rourou even though they had their own back-yard farm at home.

Cagi said supporting his younger brothers who were both still in high school was one of the reasons he and his two siblings worked extra hard.

"They are basically why we all work so hard. To put food on the table for them and make sure they get a good education and a good future as well. I mean like all families, they can give you headaches at times but hey, as one of their elder siblings, they're our responsibility. Dad played his part and now it's our turn."

Cagi said his mother was his inspiration when it came to shopping choices for the family and until today he said he still followed her teachings.

"I only shop with my sisters. You can't go wrong with a female's intuition when it comes to shopping. I am still learning and sometimes if I go for my normal products, they'd advise me on something that's on special or something new and better. I can always put my trust on their better judgement."-

He advised the public to stick to their shopping lists and refrain from impulsive buying.

"In case you come into a situation where you see something you really want to buy but don't really need, use the 10 seconds rule. Ask yourself, why do you need that product and how will that benefit you and your family in the long run. If you can't answer that in 10 seconds, put it back on the shelf and move on."-

Cagi said he loved his fruits especially apples and grapes and his vegies namely plain rourou (cooked in the Wainibuka or Naitasiri style.)

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