Photo: Flickr / Mark Z.
Although many taste tests say that generic items measure up to brand-name goods, there may be some products you’re not willing to go generic for because you think the generic’s quality is poor.Redditor LincolnSt, who said he has worked at grocery stores his entire life, says that the producers of the brand-name goods are actually repackaging the generic items at the same factory, which means that the quality of the product is about the same (even though they may have different ingredients).
Here’s how to find out which store-brand goods are the same quality as their brand-name counterparts:
Here is a picture of a package of Johnsonville Brats. Do you see the small circle above “Previously handled frozen for your protection. Refreeze or refrigerate”? That is the serial number for the factory or slaughterhouse where the meat was packaged (in this case, 34225).
Even the biggest names only have a handful of places that will package their product and (usually) only one that will handle the grocery chains in your region. That location will also handle or package the store-brand items.
So match the serial number on a name-brand meat product that you know to be of good quality with the store-brand meat product of a similar type. If they are the same, you have found out who actually makes the store-brand item. It takes a little while to find out exactly who is making what, but it will save you money if you are looking for quality along with low prices.
If this seems like too much of a hassle for a few dollars, just remember that you only have to do it once, and then you’ll know which store-brand goods to buy going forward.