Does Brand Name Always Equal Better Value?

If you think back to your mother’s kitchen cupboards, and her mother’s before that, you’ll likely be able to identify a few brands of products that were always a staple. Whether they’re food products, cleaning solutions, or anything in between, the brands you always saw eventually became the brands you buy today.

That’s not so strange in a world where we live by example.

However, in a world where the dollar is of less use than it used to be, critical thinking should definitely be a part of the formula when you go shopping.

It’s important to ask yourself, “Does brand name always equal better value?” when buying items to stock your shelves at home. Of course, it’s difficult to determine the answer to that question without trying every single product on the market!

But how about focusing on the ones that have the most impact to you and your family?

Here’s what brand name almost always equals to:

1. Integrity. Because you’ve seen others from generations before buy only specific brands of products, you’ll automatically feel a sense of trust and integrity knowing that so many others before you trusted the brands. But does that mean the brand fits into your lifestyle in an evolving world? Maybe, maybe not.

2. Higher prices. You can almost always guarantee that brand name products will be more expensive than generic brands, and that’s simply because these manufacturers know their market is secure enough for consumers to continue buying the products even though the cost is higher.

3. Critical acclaim. Brand name products have been looked upon favorably by critics over the years, and that reputation tends to stick. That’s one reason why you’ll always see those popular brands at eye level on the grocery shelves!

But let’s dig down a little further into some specific examples

1. Fresh produce. Chopped veggies and fruit are brought to you by conglomerate manufacturers as well as small town farmers. Your instinct is to buy the brand your mom always bought, but when you read the labels, you realize both offerings have everything in common!

* Fancy packaging with a shorter shelf life shouldn’t make you choose a brand name product over an unknown brand.

* Freshness and quality should always be your bench mark for choosing perishable items.

2. Canned fish. Tuna, for example, can be caught in waters where there is or isn’t the possibility of endangerment to dolphins. Although it may be more expensive, brand name tuna will almost always indicate “Dolphin Safe” on the labels, and that might be more important to you than saving a few cents per can.

* To save money and still get the brand name, you can buy larger quantities of canned items when they’re on special or you have coupons to bring the cost down.

3. Purified drinking water. With the continuing rise in pollution, it’s important to be careful when buying drinking water. While your mom would buy a particular brand of “pure spring water” because it’s purported to be from a clear running spring, today you’re more likely to find the same purifying chemicals in it that are in your tap water.

* In fact, many brands of bottled water are simply tap water from whatever municipality the bottling plant is located in.

* Most water brands use the same purifying methods, but some try to earn a few extra cents by slapping on a readily recognizable label.

At the end of the day, the value of products, whether or not they’re brand name, is really dependent on the things that matter most to you and your family. Quality is certainly an important factor, but so, too, is relevance at a time when every penny counts!