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The Coupon Lady: What to shop for in June

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On the first Sunday of each month, my article highlights the sales cycles that will occur. Knowing upcoming sales are before they happen will help smart shoppers find the best deals and know what to stock up on.

June has many loss leaders, but stores will be charging full price for summer gear as the weather gets hotter. Expect to pay premium prices for sunscreen, bug spray and allergy medicine.

Sales cycles are the certain times stores and manufacturers put products on sale. Most regular sales cycles happen in six-, 12- or 24-week intervals. However, there are other times things go on sale. During the year, there are national product months, weeks or even days when certain products are featured heavily. Other reasons for having a sale could include changing packaging sizing or price, celebrating special occasions (such as themed holiday cake mixes or cookies) or highlighting the launch of a new product or expanded product line.

Mother Nature herself even provides us with a cycle – the life cycles of plants and animals determine when crops and livestock are plentiful.

There are a few retail deals in June worth mentioning. According to All You magazine, June is a great time to buy a bathing suit or summer wear. Take advantage of early sales for the best selection. With Father’s Day coming up and new graduates preparing for college, start looking for deals on tools such as drills or saws and tech products such as GPS units. Since June is a busy month for weddings, many stores feature sales on dishes, china and some crystal pieces.

June is National Dairy Month. It should be easy to find great deals on milk, eggs, cheese, ice cream, yogurt, butter, sour cream, cream cheese, whipped cream and even coffee creamer. The National Dairy Council works with stores to offer deep discounts on these items during the month. Look for promotions involving free gallons of milk with purchases such as cereal.

Stockpiling dairy items is possible with a little freezer space. Yogurt, eggs and butter will freeze well with little change in texture. Milk will slightly separate once frozen and must be shaken once thawed. Cheese and cream cheese will change slightly in texture and crumble more, so I recommend only freezing dry-block forms of hard cheeses. Once thawed, they should be used as an ingredient in baking or melted in sauces that hide the change in texture. This change in texture does not affect taste once properly thawed.

June is also National Headache Month. Using coupons during sales this month will provide you with free or steeply discounted aspirin, headache medicines and other types of pain relievers. Allergy and sinus headache medicine is included.

Other national events in June include National Candy Month, National Seafood Month, National Iced Tea Month and National Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Month.

Although May had better sales on barbecue items, individual stores will feature some of them as loss leaders during June sales, so deals are possible if you keep a close watch on the ads. Sale items include barbecue sauce, ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, pickles, relish, marinades and steak sauce. Other picnic items on sale this month include charcoal, beer, soda, chips, buns, paper plates, napkins and cups.

Meats on sale this month also follow the barbecue theme. Look for deals on steaks, beef ribs, ground beef, pork ribs, hot dogs, fresh or frozen hamburger patties, sausages and chicken.

Produce that is in season in June includes blueberries, apricots, eggplant, peaches, potatoes, raspberries, Vidalia onions, tomatoes, watermelon, summer squash, honeydew melons, corn, grapes, cucumbers and red onions. Although these items might not have coupons, they will be at their lowest price points. If you have space, freeze what you don’t immediately need.

To take advantage of Mother Nature’s sales cycle, plan meals that feature these items to make some fresh, flavorful and frugal dishes for your family!


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