How much should you spend on meat at the supermarket?

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It’s no secret that trimming the fat on your grocery bill goes a long way to beef up your savings. While meat can make up a large chunk of your supermarket spend, you don’t need to fork out big bucks to get some pork on your fork.

Below, we reveal how much Aussies spend on meat at the supermarket per week for comparison. We also provide a guide that includes the average spend on meat by state, household size, income, age group, and supermarket, plus listed some budgeting tips.

How much do Aussies spend on meat each week?

Aussie households spend on average $41 per week on meat (including seafood) at the supermarket, according to a Canstar Blue survey of supermarket shoppers*. This equates to about $164 a month or $1,968 a year. The cost of meat and seafood products per week makes up about a quarter of the average weekly grocery spend in Australia − $153.

Here are some other meaty facts about meat preferences, as found in our survey:

  • Over a quarter of Aussies (26%) eat meat every day, while roughly the same number (24%) have considered eating less meat for health or environmental reasons
  • 27% try to purchase ethically sourced meat (i.e. free-range chicken, grass-fed beef, etc.)
  • Over a third of Aussies (37%) would eat more seafood or fish if it was less expensive
  • Another 27% of people prefer to purchase meat from a supermarket rather than a butcher

Woolworths bags

Which supermarket is the cheapest for meat?

This table displays the average weekly meat spend by supermarket, based on a Canstar Blue survey of more than 6,000 Australian shoppers.

Supermarket Average weekly spend on meat
Woolworths $43
Coles $44
ALDI $46

Source: Canstar Blue research, December 2021.

Our survey found that Aussies who shop at Woolworths tend to spend less on meat per week than those who shop at Coles and ALDI. This may suggest that shoppers are willing to spend more on quality meat products in budget supermarkets where they can save money on other essentials. Just keep in mind that Australian meat retail costs will vary between supermarkets, based on factors like supply and demand, production costs (i.e price of grain, etc.), seasonality, and distributor pricing (what a supermarket pays to source and stock a particular product).

What’s the cheapest type of meat?

Aussie shoppers tend to spend less on chicken than on any other type of meat − $14 per week − while people spend about $25 per week on lamb, according to our survey.

  • The average spend for seafood and beef was $23 per week
  • The weekly spend to get pork on your fork was $20

Average meat spend by state

This table shows the average weekly spend on supermarket meat and seafood products across Australian states, based on a Canstar Blue survey of more than 6,000 shoppers.

State Average weekly spend on meat
Tasmania $36
Victoria $38
Western Australia $39
South Australia $40
Queensland $43
New South Wales $43

Source: Canstar Blue research, December 2021.

As outlined above, households in Tasmania reported the lowest average spend on meat weekly, while Aussies in Queensland and New South Wales spend the most on meat per week, to the tune of $43 per week ($7 more).

Average meat spend in TAS

People in Tasmania pay on average $36 per week for meat at the supermarket – the least of all states. This equates to $144 a month or $1,728 per year. This is perhaps due to the fact that only 21% of households in Tassie eat meat every day, compared to other states where more people eat meat daily. Our survey also found that 15% of Tasmanians have watched media (i.e. videos, documentaries, etc.) that has made them more conscious of buying ethically-sourced meat and seafood (i.e. organic, grass-fed, wild-caught, etc.).

Supermarket meat section

Average meat spend in VIC

Households in Victoria recorded the second-lowest average spend on meat per week − $38. This adds up to about $152 a month or $1,824 per year. Our latest survey found that nearly half of Victorians (47%) try to purchase the freshest meat available (i.e. with a later expiration date), while 13% also prefer to purchase meat from the deli section of their supermarket, rather than pre-packaged meat from the fridge section.

Average meat spend in WA

Shoppers in Western Australia pay on average $39 per week for meat at the supermarket. This equates to $156 a month or $1,872 per year. Our survey found that 63% of Western Australians buy meat on their regular grocery shop (63%), more than in any other state. A tenth (10%) would also consider eating lab-grown meat, more than in any other state.

Average meat spend in SA

Households in South Australia fork out on average $40 per week on meat and seafood products, equalling $160 a month or $1,920 per year. Our survey found that nearly a third of shoppers in SA (29%) opt to purchase meat from a supermarket rather than a butcher, and a similar portion (28%) also purchase marinated meat from the supermarket.

Butcher shop window

Average meat spend in QLD

People in Queensland spend on average $43 per week on meat at the supermarket − the most of all states (on par with NSW). This equates to $172 a month or $2,064 per year. A quarter of shoppers in the Sunshine State (29%) tend to buy meat in bulk (i.e. to freeze, etc.), while 26% are also willing to pay more for ethically sourced meat or seafood.

Average meat spend in NSW

In New South Wales, people also pay on average $43 per week for meat and seafood at the supermarket, equating to $172 a month or $2,064 per year (on par with QLD). Our latest survey suggests that shoppers in NSW seem to be more health and eco-conscious, with 26% having considered eating less meat for health or environmental reasons.

Average meat spend by household size

This table shows the average weekly spend on meat and seafood products in Australia by household size.

Household size Average weekly spend on meat
1 $40
2 $53
3 $57
4 $75
5 or more $46

Source: Canstar Blue research, December 2021.

Naturally, households with more people (including dependents) spend more on meat per week – about $35 more – than single-person households. As a rule of thumb, food expenditure generally goes up by $40-50 with every person in a household.

Average meat spend by age group

People who may have more dependants at charge like millennials and people aged under 30, tend to spend a little more on meat at the supermarket each week than older Australians (under 60 years of age) who spend the least. Here’s a breakdown of the average weekly meat spend by age group, based on our latest survey results.

Age group Average weekly spend on meat
18 to 29 years $42
30 to 39 years $41
40 to 49 years $41
50 to 59 years $39
60 to 69 years $41
70 years and over $40

Source: Canstar Blue research, December 2021.

Man buys meat

Average meat spend by household income

High-income households tend to spend a fraction more on meat per week – about $12 extra than low-income earners. Here’s an overview of the average weekly spend on supermarket meat and seafood products by household income.

Household income Average weekly spend on meat
Less than $30,000 $33
$30,000 to $49,999 $39
$50,000 to $79,999 $42
$80,000 to $119,999 $43
More than $120,000 $45

Source: Canstar Blue research, December 2021.


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Top 5 tips to save money on meat at the supermarket

  1. Shop meat at the end of the day: Supermarkets typically discount meat products nearing their used-by date at the end of each day to make way for fresher stock the following day. This means that shopping in the afternoon around 4pm or 5pm could save you big dollars on a rump steak or seafood! Keep your eye out for ‘reduced’ stickers.
  2. Try a meat-free meal once a week: Going meatless one day per week could save you about $40 a month and make family dinners healthier by substituting animal products with veggies and plant-based alternatives like tofu and lentils. Win-win.
  3. Buy meat in bulk: You can often bag a bargain by buying meat in bulk when it’s on sale and freezing the lot for later. You can also try buying meat in bulk from a wholesaler or butcher.
  4. Buy cheap cuts of meat: Buying cheap meat cuts like chuck steak and chicken drumsticks could not only save you loads of money in the long run but also help you whip up fancy dishes like Beef Bourguignon and Coq Au Vin to impress the family. Oui!
  5. Compare prices: Check out the price per kilogram of your favourite meat cuts and seafood and compare prices from different supermarkets and butcher shops. Keep in mind that supermarkets typically release their weekly specials on Wednesdays.

Compare Supermarket Meats

*Survey based on shoppers who have purchased and eaten a supermarket homebrand meat product (i.e. steak, mince, cutlets, etc.) from a supermarket in a four-week period – in this case, 6,010 people.

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