$aturday $avings...Empty Shelves Again?

 We were a little shocked to see these empty Aldi shelves at our nearest store.  They should have held plain canned fruit and vegetables.   The cracker shelves were also noticeably sparse...other customers were complaining about not even finding saltines.  We haven’t seen this since last year.  They were not rationing anything there yet, as they did earlier.  
We were making a last stock-up run before winter sets in here in Iowa.  After living in Germany 5 years, we enjoy getting some imported German products at Aldi, like chocolate and imported pastas and cheeses, as well as some canned goods and produce and dairy at a good price.  The store is over 30 miles away, so we stock up to make it pay.
We received an email on October 28th from Aldi...
"When you shop our aisles in the coming weeks and months, you may notice certain items arriving later than intended or after our advertised on-sale dates. We ask for your patience as we navigate supply chain delays. We’re working to the best of our ability to source the premium ingredients and products that you have come to expect in our stores this time of year."
We are also seeing empty paper goods aisles again at our local Walmart...after full shelves the last 6 months or so.  The store was crowded on a weekday as people were stocking up, apparently to beat rising prices and get holiday purchases before those shelves were empty.
As prices rise and shortages are starting to appear again, if you don’t have a good pantry, you may want to consider making sure you have enough of basic ingredients to last awhile.  We keep about a year’s worth of basic ingredients…not necessarily prepared foods…on hand most of the time…keeping it rotated and cooking at home most days, as well as a supply of household necessities.
We try very hard to never throw anything away and try to use our leftovers or buy smaller quantities.  We use any perishables first after shopping.  In our experience, milk and eggs last longer than the dates on the containers.  We have a good pantry inventory; now I just replace what we use.
  Most of our canned goods are home-canned, and I can chicken, hamburger, beef, and mixed dishes like navy bean soup, chili, split pea soup and stew for our own convenience foods, and I make some jam and relishes every year too.  I’m thankful that I had a good supply of canning lids in my supply stash!  Who would have ever thought canning lids and yeast would have been in short supply last year?
Our utility company has already warned its customers they expect natural gas to be 46% to 96% higher this season; we only use it for our furnace, but that’s a substantial increase.  Another reason to watch our pennies on a fixed income.  Our bill this month was higher than the same month last year...but we used only 15 therms this month and 25 therms last year when it was colder here.  

We’re starting to see a little “Jimmy Carter  years" déjà vu.  


  1. Our horse feed went from $11.25 a bag to $17. a bag in a few short months. This is sad for all of us.

  2. It's a scary time and I worry it is going to get worse.

  3. I live in Ontario and have not yet seen things as bad as what you are showing. But, having said that, I shop mostly once a month at Costco to re-stock my supplies for the month. I too, never eat out, and make my own bread. I will shop for meat at my local butcher even though prices are higher there, and I shop local for items that move faster like carrots and salad. I think because you have 10 times the population, you see things before we do-- so I am expecting the same things to affect us, just at a slower rate... I water can, but still have to learn to pressure can meat!

    1. Gail...Iowa is not as bad as many other states...we're in the heart of farm country and food supply is not usually a big problem unless it's imported; during 2020 our local stores didn't always have the same brands, but did have alternately sourced items. Paper products, cleaning supplies, etc. were more of a problem. I think news reports of higher prices are driving folks to stock up again. It will be interesting. We do hate to drive some distance and find empty shelves, so we are shopping more locally instead of Costco which is 70 miles away, although we were members until 2020. Their rationing didn't make it feasible for us last year.
      Thanks for your comment.

  4. It's not quite so bad yet in Nova Scotia but being at the end of the truck line things can only get worse. Prices on some items like mayonnaise had gone up $3 last week. I'm going back to making my own. I do quite a bit of pressure canning and will need some wide mouth lids before the end of next summer. Has anyone used the "no name" lids which are listed on amazon? I always use Bernadin or Ball as it's unpleasant to have lid failures after a day of canning.

    1. I regularly use these 86MM lids from The Dutchman’s Store
      in Cantril, Iowa...they are much better than regular Ball lids...they are heavier and with more mastic. I never have a failure with them. They are meant for folks who sell their canned goods in jars. Prices, however, are almost double 2019's. Lehmans.com also sells these lids.
      I purchased some more for next season...I do a lot of my canning in January, February and March...meat, chicken, beans, etc. I don't want to be without!

  5. Really liked the information you share. Thank you for sharing ❤️

  6. In Georgia, I haven't seen vast outages yet but there are some stores (a different area in each by the way, not all one product) with empty shelves. Yesterday in a nearby grocer about 1/4 of the juice aisle was all empty shelving. This was a standard sized grocery aisle and 1/4 of all the product was gone.
    Because I read comments I know that many do as we do and shop once a month. Like you we live about 30 miles from Aldi and that is where we tend to do our once a month shopping, but I think we all need to consider working our budgets and time in such a way that we can shop every two weeks. It would allow us all a little room for outages as opposed to thinking we'll get all in this one trip this month and next month we'll try to make up for it if it's in stock. At least that is my thinking. It would also put less a strain on the store's inventory if we were buying for two weeks instead of a full month and allow others who have never kept food storage to buy as well.


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