It is that time of the year again when stokvels start preparing to buy their end-of-year groceries in bulk. From booking transport services to making sure that you get the bulk-buying deals that you need, there are a number of factors to deal with and careful planning must be done.
Before you choose your store or supplier, take the following factors into consideration:
Choosing your store
Does the store offer a secure shopping environment with electronic funds transfer facilities which are safer than cash payments?
How much do I buy?
It is important to sit down with all stokvel members and decide how much stock of each item will be purchased. Consider the family size of each stokvel member. Buying in bulk not only saves you money but also saves you time as the items purchased will last for a long time. Keep in mind the storage facilities that each member has as well as perishable items that will be bought in bulk.
Do not purchase and accept goods with expired dates or dates that will soon expire. It is best to check the expiry date on each item while you are at the store. Even better, give the responsibility of checking expiry dates on each item to all members of the stokvel group who will be assisting at the store. This is a quicker way to check for not only expired goods but for damaged packaging as well.
Storage facilities at home
Consider your storage facilities before buying groceries in bulk. Check the instructions on each product’s packaging for the proper storage requirements. Poor storage will affect the product quality and it will not last as long as you had hoped. Proper storage will ensure freshness and keeps the nutritional value of the product. Incorrect storage of products may lead to an infestation of cockroaches and rats. Stock up on sealable storage containers and plastic wrap before your products arrive at home.
Know your consumer rights
Knowledge is power and if you are not satisfied with the service from a store, speak up immediately. You have a right to high-quality goods and services. Suppliers are not allowed to vary the quality of a product or service in a discriminatory manner. All consumers should be treated equally, irrespective of gender, race, socio-economic status or their geographic locations.