NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) – The cost of food is up by more than 8% compared to last year, according to the government. Prices for staples like meat, chicken, fish and eggs have seen even larger increases.

Consumer Reports shared that there are a lot of ways to spend less money while shopping for food.

“First, make a list because that ensures that you’re not going to pick up extra things that you really don’t need as impulse buys,” said Tobie Stanger of Consumer Reports.

One way to save is to consider buying “Store brands” instead of more well-known brands. Store brands are made specifically for your supermarket and usually carry the name or brand of your store.

“Store brands we have found can cost as little as 25% less than the name brands, and we have found at consumer reports that the quality can be as good as or better than the name brands,” said Stanger.

If you shop at the same store frequently, get a loyalty card.

“Getting a loyalty card for your local supermarket is very important because often discounts are provided only for people who are who have those loyalty cards. Sometimes you can create a list shopping list in the app of the loyalty card and then you can see what is available and on sale based on what’s on your list,” said Stanger.

You can also save money by using “Unit pricing.” Unit prices are the little stickers on many supermarket shelves that show you how much an item costs by weight or volume.

“So if you see, say, two boxes of pasta right next to each other and one says that it’s so many cents per ounce and you can compare that with the one next to it, you can save money on the one that has less cents per ounce. It’s not always obvious from the packages themselves,” said Stanger.

Consumer reports also says shopping apps like ‘basket’, ‘ibotta’, and ‘flipp’ can help you find the lowest prices, store specials and coupons to help you save.