Five ways grocery stores rip you off

five ways grocery stores rip you off
five ways grocery stores rip you off

For most of us, going to the grocery store is unavoidable. And if you're not careful, leaving too much money in stores' hands will be unavoidable, too.

Scanners ring up wrong prices, stores overcharge, and you can end up paying more for less in subtle ways as well.

Just this week, we told you the Los Angeles City Attorney's office filed criminal charges against the California grocery chain Ralph's, alleging the retailer has been overcharging for prepackaged and weighed goods. Undercover inspectors found overcharges, incorrectly-priced food packages or packages that weighed lighter than they should, according to the allegations.

Stores also pump up the weight in packaged food, by adding ice or water solutions. The nonprofit National Conference on Weights and Measures says consumers may be paying up to $23 a pound for ice in seafood in certain circumstances, according to a 17-state investigation conducted earlier this year. An ice glaze is added during the packaging process to help preserve the quality. It's legal, but some unscrupulous packagers can profit by pumping up the amount of the solution.

LiveCheap.com, a website dedicated to helping people, well, live cheap, came up with the top five ways grocery stores can get you to pay more than you should: