Investigation: Home brands now half the price of name brands

A Nine News Investigation has busted the home brand myth and uncovered how shoppers can save hundreds of dollars on their next grocery bill without sacrificing on quality.

Budgeting expert Michelle House says you can save hundreds on grocery staples including oats, pasta and sugar, and Canstar Blue says 77 percent of consumers believe home brands are good quality.  

3 ways to save on Grocery Bills:

A Nine News investigation compared the prices of home brand sugar, flour, butter, BBQ biscuits, shredded cheese and baked beans products at Coles, Aldi and Woolworths.

Aldi’s basket was the cheapest at $11.23 followed by Woolworths ($11.95) and Coles ($12.20) while the brand products were nearly twice as much at $21.95.

Supermarket Basket Price
Woolworths $11.95
Aldi $11.23
Coles $12.20

“The gap between big name brands and homebrand is shrinking all the time,” says Canstar Blue spokesperson Simon Downes.

The most commonly purchased home brand items according to Canstar are items we purchase several times per week like bread and eggs, while the items we are more likely to buy brands are tea, coffee, soft drink, chocolate and chips.

But Simon Downes believes often the only real difference is the price tag.  “Sometimes the supermarkets use the same suppliers as the big name brands for their home brands so not only is the quality as good, actually there’s minimal difference,” he says.

QUT Business School’s Dr Gary Mortimer says the rise of Aldi brands are prompting supermarkets to release phantom brands like the Woolworth’s owned Hillview label.

“Supermarket home brand products have come a long way from the cheap generic products that we often used to see at the very bottom shelves of supermarkets,” he says.

“Brands that are essentially home brand products but they look like brands and consumers see those and see those as being great value and great quality.”