Saturday, January 26, 2013

Bread Retirement Fund

Homemade Bread

I calculated how much money I could save on the cost of bread over a lifetime if I make it myself instead of buying it. I will probably be monetarily poor for the rest of my life, so it is good practice for me to live on less than $1 a day for food this year. I could not do this project if I didn’t have a garden or live in a rural area. I realize that bread is not the healthiest food but it is cheap, calorie dense and versatile.

I eat about 1.5lbs(24oz) of bread per week. If I bought bread every week, it would cost $2.70 for a low-quality sandwich bread filled with preservatives and bleach. The cost per year for buying bread is $140.40 and making the same amount is only $53.04. If I use the 5lb flour at $2.44, the difference for buying bread vs. making it is $87.36/yr. I do realize that it doesn’t seem like much, but by putting that little bit of money in a low-interest (1.35%) account every year for 35yrs the total adds up the over $4,000. I am simplifying the effects of inflation and other factors over time, but it is amazing how one small change can lead to a significant amount of savings.      

End balance        $4,073.27
Total principal    $3,144.96
Total interest     $928.31

Here is how the cost breaks down:

Amount Used
Cost Used
Flour (2.27kg)
Sugar (4.53kg)
Sea Salt (500g)
Butter (128tbs)
Yeast (908g)
Total (rounded)


Bread machines are an excellent investment and can usually be bought cheaply at yard sales or a flea market. All of the ingredients I use can be bought for much less.

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