7 Items You Should Always Buy Generic


generic1You're actually better off buying beverages such as juice and milk from the store brands. That's because they're produced regionally and are less processed than their brand-name counterparts. Also since transportation is less of a factor, quality is fresher.

According to Consumer Reports, a panel of trained tasters reported that a Publix store brand juice ($2.99/carton) tasted better than the  Tropicana ($3.48/carton) right next to it. There was also a 60% cost difference between store-brand milk and brand-name milk.

However, soda is a different story, as many people have strong opinions. Some recommend buying soda generically, although generic versions of soft drinks can vary widely in taste. The ingredients are mostly the same -- tiny variations in flavor can create quite different versions of the same drink. If your taste buds aren't picky, the price of generic soft drinks can't be beat.

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Cereal and Grain Products

generic222Cereal is one of the best values when it comes to buying generic.

Generic cereal costs 25%-50% less than brand-name. Generic cereal is also generally produced with the same ingredients by the same manufacturers.

One sneaky way of getting the kids to switch to the cheapie version of their favorite cereal is to buy the brand-name cereal, save the box when the cereal is all done and put the generic bag inside the box.

We won't tell!

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Pantry Staples

generic5Spices, salt, flour, sugar -- these single-ingredient items are all the same, whether they're generic or brand name. The FDA requires that the same standards of production, ingredients, and storage hold across the board for generic versions of staples such as these.

However, their prices are astronomically different.

Brand-name Oregano is $5.48/oz. while store-brand Oregano is $1.24/oz. That's a $4.24 difference, over 300% more for brand-name.

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Cleaning Products

generic66Cleaning products, like pantry staples, all consist of the same ingredients. The difference here really is in the advertising and label.

For example, why do we even bother paying brand name for bleach? Bleach is essentially a cup of chlorine. Brand-name bleach costs about $2.25 while store brand bleach is $1.67, making a difference of $0.58. Certain people have a loyalty to a brand name for various reasons such as fragrance. For these reasons, you may choose to pay extra to stick with your preferred cleaning product of choice.

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generic777The FDA requires that all generic drugs have the same active ingredient dosage and safety measures as that of their brand-name counterparts. This means that the drug quality between generic and brand name are identical. Companies producing generic drugs are able to offer their products at such low prices because they use the active ingredient other companies have spent years developing. When that company's active drug ingredient patent expires, the ingredient is up for grabs.

Take Acetaminophen for instance. Brand-name Acetaminophen can go up to as high as $10.99, while store-brand costs $4 less at $6.99, a 57% difference.

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Baby Formula

generic10The Infant Formula Act guarantees that all baby formulas are identical in nutrition and circumstances of manufacture. At the end of the day, the difference between baby formulas comes down to taste and texture. Whichever baby formula you pick, make sure your baby reacts to it well, and when you find a winner, stick with it.

Constantly switching your baby's formula will wreak havoc on the digestive system.

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generic11Brand name batteries do last longer than generic batteries.

However, their cost does not justify their value, according to Consumer Reports.

For example, the Thunderbolt Magnum batteries have less power but are almost 57% cheaper than the next best value, Duracell CopperTop batteries.

The best bet for the money-savvy consumer is to avoid the lowest-priced batteries (which fade quickly) and stay somewhere in the middle.

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  • googled off

    This is bad information on your part. Some items need that extra power, and if the item is hard to get to, it will mean more times going up to change it. This is why people pay for lithium batteries with a ten year rating. So this isn’t good information presented in a precious and accurate way.