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Here’s Your Average Weekly Grocery Spend by State. How Does Your Trolley Measure Up?

Ever wondered where you stack up against the average cost of your grocery shopping around the country? Well, the numbers have been crunched and the receipts are in – so how does your trolley compare?

We dare you to buckle in and take a look…

Big weekly shops, top-up shops, last-minute forgotten items and kid bribes from the confectionery aisle – it all adds up. Groceries are often one of your household’s BIGGEST living expenses after mortgage and rent and one of the first areas of the budget we try to chip away at when reducing spending.

Brace yourselves. via GIPHY

So, to break the news gently, WHAT IS the average grocery bill in Australia?

Canstar Blue conducted a survey of 2,600 households to get to the nitty-gritty of how much people were spending all over Australia on their groceries, and the results are quite … surprising.

The average grocery bill in Australia is $140 a week. Gulp. WHAT?

Just let that settle in for a minute. An Australian household spends on average $140 a week on groceries. That’s around $560 a month or $6,720 a year. Does that sound waaayyyy too low to you or perhaps it’s about right?

Let’s remember this is an average sum – so there’s plenty of us who fall either side of the numbers. 


What are we buying for that?

So what are most people putting in their trolleys every week? All the usual suspects – staple or everyday food items (and not so much sneaky Friday night Magnum ice creams).

Canstar revealed that 69% of us are adding fresh fruit and vegetables, 61% dairy and eggs, 55% bakery items, 55% meat, seafood and fresh deli items, 54% pantry items and 46% frozen foods. Hooray for the majority buying fresh fruit and veggies every week!

Hold the Snickers. via GIPHY

The state by state breakdown

If you’re a West Australian, you’re one of the lucky ones (or perhaps most disciplined shoppers) spending less on your weekly groceries than other states. While Northern Territory takes the spot as big spenders, spending an average of $25 more per week.

The nationwide survey had shoppers spilling the beans on their weekly spending and purchasing habits, with more revealed than we expected!

  • Western Australians spend on average $136 per week on groceries. They’re a savvy bunch of shoppers, with 72% of people paying attention to supermarket special offers and promotions.  While for 16% of West Aussies, the cost of staples like milk and bread determined where they shop. #bargainhunters.
  • Queenslanders are the second-lowest spenders, with an average grocery bill of $139 a week. More than a quarter (29%) of Queensland shoppers choose supermarket own brands over the big brands with 49% of them believing a supermarket’s own brands are of good quality.
  • South Australians spend an average of $139 on groceries a week and is right there on par with Queensland as the second-lowest spenders in the country. We love the deli counter apparently, with 52% of us buying our meats over the supermarket deli counter rather than visiting our butcher.
  • Tasmanian shoppers spend a little extra. An average of $140 per week on groceries and are our top fresh fruit and veggie shoppers at 76%! It was also reported that Tassie has the highest proportion of residents who eat little or no meat. #plantlifestyleforthewin
  • In New South Wales, households are spending on average $141 on groceries every week. It was revealed that 60% of people had switched supermarkets in the past to save money and it’s not surprising why with ALDI boasting 180 locations as of last year.
  • Victorian grocery shoppers spend an average of $142 a week at the supermarket. They’re also the people who buy more frozen foods (51%) and pantry items (57%) than any other state.
  • Northern Territory is home to our big spenders, tipping the register at $161 on average a week. I’m not surprised – freight would be a huge added expense to grocery items. It was found the majority of those surveyed (63%) shopped where the price was right for basics like milk and bread.

You earn more, you generally spend more. via GIPHY

BUT I have a big family!

Of course, the size of your household plays a HUGE part in how much you’re spending at the supermarket each week. Generally speaking, your grocery expenses go up by $50 a week with every extra person living with you. The average weekly grocery spends are below:

  • One person household – $102 average weekly grocery spend
  • Two person household – $146 average weekly grocery spend
  • Three person household – $169 average weekly grocery spend
  • Four person household – $181 average weekly grocery spend
  • Five or more person household – $215 average weekly grocery spend

So if you earn more do you spend more?

Pretty much! Higher-income earning households spend more at the checkout than low-income earners. Here’s how the numbers fell according to household income:

  • Less than $30,000$109 average weekly grocery spend
  • $30,000 to $49,999$127 average weekly grocery spend
  • $50,000 to $79,999$139 average weekly grocery spend
  • $80,000 to $119,999$150 average weekly grocery spend
  • More than $120,000$167 average weekly grocery spend

So that’s how the supermarket spends play out folks. How do you compare with the survey results for your state, family size and household income?

Of course, you can always switch to supermarket own brands and save around $2,000 per year!

What to Read Next

Motivated to try and squeeze the purse strings a bit and bring your grocery spend down? Take a look at these posts to get you saving money at the supermarket!

Avatar of Lexi Klaebe

South Australian mum and self proclaimed foodie, Lexi can most days be found in the kitchen, apron tied firm and armed with a whisk or wooden spoon!

1 Comment

  1. Avatar of Blossom

    My grocery bill has increased , mainly because of price increases on what I am able to eat which is somewhat limited because of medical problems. I mainly buy supermarket brand, partly because they are made by national manufacturers. Some have different ratio of ingredients. e,g, mixed fruit may have more sultanas and less of another fruit. I try the cheap ones and if I don’t like them I don’t buy them again. I worked at a wholesale distributor for 40 years and processed invoices with both supermarket brand and manufacturer brand on the same invoice. The price of Fruit and Vegetables fluctuates quite a lot even on fresh seasonal produce.

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