Savvy consumer finds out if you can get a weekly shop from B&M

Everyone is looking for a bargain these days, especially when they head to the supermarket to do their weekly shop.

Whether it means buying own brand food or switching to a discount shop, Britons are finding ways to pay less.

The ‘big’ supermarkets are likely most shoppers’ first choice, but a savvy shopper has checked out an unlikely source to find out how it compares.

WalesOnline sent one of its reporters, Joshua Knapman, to budget retailer B&M to compare prices for more than 30 everyday items – from milk and crisps to bin bags and toothpaste.

But he was unable to get everything on his list and the sizes of some items varied from store to store.

Here is what he found:

First up, there’s no frozen or fresh fruit and veg sections here, so while that’s a slight hindrance, I was confident there’d still be enough of a range to buy a week’s worth of shopping to live on. I could always pick up my fruit and veg at another store or nearby greengrocer.

There were also a few other food items that we didn’t manage to secure from our shopping list at the B&M store in Cardiff Bay – this particular shop doesn’t stock bread or alcohol and they were out of eggs on this occassion.

But there was milk, cereal, pasta, tinned food, pizza and biscuits – plus things like toilet paper and washing up liquid.

And there were some major savings on particular items, like a box of Twinings tea bags for £1.99, way cheaper than what I could find on the Tesco website.

The results

The shop came to £37.84 , which for 31 items (34 when you include three 5p bags) seems reasonable. I was expecting to spend a little less, but the draw of big-name brands at a cheaper price than some competitors can add up.

Here’s what I bought – and I’ve put prices of the equivalent items from Tesco in brackets for comparison.

Food and drink

Milk (two litres) – £1.09 (Tesco – £1.09)

Pasta (500g) – 45p (Tesco – 56p)

Uncle Ben’s rice (8 pack) – £1.29 (Tesco – £2.85)

Tinned tomatoes (400g) – 29p (Tesco – 35p)

Heinz Baked beans (415g) – 65p (Tesco – 75p)

Vegetable soup (400g) – 39p (Tesco – 95p)

Kids’ yogurt (6 pack) – £1 (Tesco – £1)

Cheese (300g) – £2 (Tesco – £2.70 for 450g)

Mini rolls (15 pack) – £1.99 (Tesco – £2.49 for a 10 pack)

Biscuits (300g) – 49p (Tesco – 45p for 400g)

Twinings tea (80 bags) – £1.99 (Tesco – £3 for 50 bags)

Kenco Millicano coffee (100g) – £2.89 (Tesco – £ 2.35)

Richmond sausages (213g) – £1 (Tesco – £1.40)

Dolmio pasta sauce (320g) – 50p (Tesco – £ 1.49)

Pataks curry sauce (400g) – 95p (Tesco – £1.89 for 450g)

Pepperoni pizza (279g) – £1 (Tesco – £1.50 for 330g)

Flora (500g) – £1 (Tesco – £1)

Cooked ham (180g) – £1 (Tesco – 60p for 125g)

Shreddies cereal (500g/damaged box) – £1.29 (Tesco – £2 for 415g)

Seabrooks crisps (6 pack) – 89p (Tesco – £1.40)

Household products

Andrex loo roll (4 pack) – £1.99 (Tesco – £2.20)

Jumbo kitchen roll – £1 (Tesco – £1)

Tie-handle bin bags (pack of 25) – £1.99 (Tesco – £2.60 for 20 bags)

Flash spray with bleach (450ml) – £1 (Tesco – £1)

Fairy non-bio washing gel (880ml) – £3.99 (Tesco – £5.50)

Multi-purpose cloths (roll of 36) – £1 (Tesco – £3 for a roll of 40)

Persil washing-up liquid (500ml) – 79p (Tesco – 80p for 740ml own brand)


Shower gel (250ml) – 89p (Tesco – £1)

Alberto Balsam shampoo – £1 (Tesco – £1)

Right Guard deodorant – £1 (Tesco – £1)

Colgate toothpaste (75ml) – 99p (Tesco – £3 for 125ml)


B&M: £37.79 (plus 25p for two 10p bags and one 5p bag)

Tesco: £51.92

What we couldn’t get

There’s no fresh or frozen produce at B&M and there were no bread or eggs, either.

This is what that additional stuff would cost at Tesco:

Onions – 75p for a 1kg bag

Cucumber – 50p

Bread – 800g toastie loaf for 55p

Pack of peppers – 95p

Beef mince – 500g for £1.69

Salad tomatoes six pack – 69p

Six free range medium eggs – 89p

Frozen peas – £1.30 for a 1kg bag

McCain home chips – £2 for a 1.5kg bag

Mixed vegetables – £1.40 f0r a 1kg bag

Total: £10.72


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