How much do you spend on groceries?

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How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby hsv_climber » Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:49 pm

Lets revive the old thread and see how inflation has changed things: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=40681

Personally, we spend ~$550-$600 / month (family of 4, but kids are 4 & 9). Would like to get that number down to $500 or less, but not sure how.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Random Poster » Mon Apr 23, 2012 1:00 pm

Our food budget for 2 people is currently around $800 a month. We generally spend $650 or so, and that is just on groceries. We seldom eat out in restaurants and I brown bag my lunch at work.

Food where we live is pricey compared to the US, particularly in regard to dairy products.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Robert44 » Mon Apr 23, 2012 1:18 pm

Family of two: We spend around $400, and we eat very well. Try to cook enough for two meals.
We go out about 6 times a month and usually have left overs for another meal.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby kybourbon » Mon Apr 23, 2012 1:19 pm

I don't want to hijack the thread, but I'd like to know if everyone separates out actual groceries vs. personal/cleaning/toiletry supplies, etc. from the grocery budget. Our "grocery" budget is about $700/mo for a family of 2, however this includes everything we purchase(not just food) except for a once, maybe twice, a month trip to Costco.

Also, if the month has 5 weekends included and not 4 the grocery budget is higher, however this usually ends up evening out over the course of the year.

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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby cheese_breath » Mon Apr 23, 2012 1:21 pm

Absolutely no idea. I'm Kroger's dream shopper. My wife eats a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables so I'm at the store almost every other day. And while I'm there I usually pick up something else (ice cream???) because it looks good to me. Also I often do my mother-in-laws shopping for her, so this provides even more opportunities to get something 'good' for myself. I admit it. I'm not a Boglehead at the grocery store.
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6% cash back on groceries

Postby Taylor Larimore » Mon Apr 23, 2012 1:28 pm

Hi Bogleheads:

If you have a large grocery budget, take a look at the American Express Preferred Blue Cash Card with 6% grocery cash back ($100 sign-up bonus; $75 annual fee).

http://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/credit-c ... sh-review/

Best wishes.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Grt2bOutdoors » Mon Apr 23, 2012 1:50 pm

Running about $325 a month for a family of 3 - this includes toiletries/cleaning supplies.
Don't know about low inflation, seems each time I go to the grocery store the bill grows, meat is up big time (50 cents a lb for chop meat) as are steaks, chicken is up at least that much as well, cereals - up at least 5% unless you buy sugary snacks, fruits are up, vegetables not as much. Guess I could always subsitute and eat a computer chip. :wink:
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby auntJovie » Mon Apr 23, 2012 1:53 pm

We generally come close to our budget of $315/mo for family of three (little one's almost two), not including the household stuff. We're currently experimenting with purchasing beef "on the hoof" as a cost-saving measure -- results remain to be seen.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby yosef » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:07 pm

kybourbon wrote:I don't want to hijack the thread, but I'd like to know if everyone separates out actual groceries vs. personal/cleaning/toiletry supplies, etc. from the grocery budget. Our "grocery" budget is about $700/mo for a family of 2, however this includes everything we purchase(not just food) except for a once, maybe twice, a month trip to Costco.

Also, if the month has 5 weekends included and not 4 the grocery budget is higher, however this usually ends up evening out over the course of the year.

kybourbon


If it comes from the grocery store, I categorize as groceries. For stores like Costco, I'll usually categorize based on what constituted the majority of the purchase. That said, I'm not as strict about tracking spending as I used to be, largely because there are too many stores like Costco, Target, etc in which I buy just about anything, and I finally decided that getting out a calculator and splitting transactions was a waste of my time. YMMV.

As for the original question, we spend probably ~$550 on groceries for a family of 4, and another $250-$300 on dining out monthly. I've always felt that was high, but we've had trouble substantially reducing it.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby ocdokie » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:11 pm

$300 per month, groceries only. Household of 2 retired adults who are indifferent eaters and 1 rabbit who demands the best fruits, vegetables, and salads.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby supersharpie » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:11 pm

My wife and I are DINKS. We don't keep exact track of what we spend on groceries but $4500 is about right; it has spiked a little since a Whole Foods opened close to our home. We also spend about $1500 on dining out so that puts us in the ballpark of $6000 a year for all food related expenses.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby hsv_climber » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:12 pm

cheese_breath wrote:Absolutely no idea. I'm Kroger's dream shopper. My wife eats a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables so I'm at the store almost every other day. And while I'm there I usually pick up something else (ice cream???) because it looks good to me. Also I often do my mother-in-laws shopping for her, so this provides even more opportunities to get something 'good' for myself. I admit it. I'm not a Boglehead at the grocery store.


I had no idea either until I've started using Mint.com couple on months ago.
I'd include toiletries/cleaning with groceries, but we did not buy any since started using Mint.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby stoptothink » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:14 pm

$120-$150/month for groceries for 1. This includes toiletries/hygiene items as I might spend $30/yr total on these.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby hsv_climber » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:19 pm

GRT2BOUTDOORS wrote:Running about $325 a month for a family of 3 - this includes toiletries/cleaning supplies.


I am impressed. How do you manage to do that, especially in NY market? Costco/Sam's only? Or Loss leaders?
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby bungalow10 » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:20 pm

Our bill is holding steady to going down. We did cancel two CSAs, and I make our bread. I've gotten better about buying in bulk, and my pantry is much more organized.

I also gave up wine for Lent... that sure had a positive impact :)
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby ocdokie » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:21 pm

I had no idea either until I've started using Mint.com couple on months ago.


+1.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby rdmayo21 » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:23 pm

Although I don't really keep close track of it, I'd say it's probably around $300 for me alone. The majority of that goes towards grass fed meat and wild seafood. Not exactly the typical diet for a college student.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby pkh01l » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:25 pm

For one, I am spending about $180 per month on groceries, toiletries and cleaning supplies. I do not include eating out or bar tabs in this number as I categorize that as "entertainment". (The entertainment is much more than the groceries! :D )
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Van » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:38 pm

As much as I want! It is wonderful to be retired, financially secure and not have to be concerned about such things. To all of you young investors out there: this is what you are striving for.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby kybourbon » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:45 pm

hsv_climber wrote:
GRT2BOUTDOORS wrote:Running about $325 a month for a family of 3 - this includes toiletries/cleaning supplies.


I am impressed. How do you manage to do that, especially in NY market? Costco/Sam's only? Or Loss leaders?


+1
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby midareff » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:56 pm

I'd say close to $550 a month for food, paper goods, etc, but considering Salmon, Sushi Grade Tuna, Tilapia, Scallops and Shrimp with lots of fresh vegetables and fruits are staples I'd don't feel much need to economize other than sales and coupons which we use. Eat out probably at least one lunch and one dinner a week..... maybe two each. Fine dining maybe once a month on top of that. Thank you Jack.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby SP-diceman » Mon Apr 23, 2012 3:10 pm

About $130 a week for two,
that includes everything not just food.

To be honest, there is actually "extra" since we don’t want to be down to the last item on everything.
The more expensive the less “extra” there is.:)


Thanks
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Sheepdog » Mon Apr 23, 2012 3:26 pm

My wife and I spent for groceries (2 persons) I do not separate out paper goods and toiletries.
2008 $442 a month
2009 $449 a month
2010 $432 a month
2011 $447 a month
So far in 2012, we have spent $425 a month, So our grocery bill has not grown. In 2009 we started doing more lower cost shopping, such as at Aldi Foods stores.

Restaurant spending is a completely another story. There, inflation is higher. I don't think we eat out more.
2008 $191 a month.
2009 $220 a month
2010 $302 a month
2011 $290 a month
2012 $321 a month to date
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby newbie_Mo » Mon Apr 23, 2012 3:29 pm

We spend approximately $700 -800 on groceries for the two of us. This includes all other household products (toilet paper, detergent etc that I estimate to be less than $30/month). We rarely eat out.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Grt2bOutdoors » Mon Apr 23, 2012 3:36 pm

hsv_climber wrote:
GRT2BOUTDOORS wrote:Running about $325 a month for a family of 3 - this includes toiletries/cleaning supplies.


I am impressed. How do you manage to do that, especially in NY market? Costco/Sam's only? Or Loss leaders?


We keep a specific list of "must-haves" (meat,chicken,fish,fruits,vegetables,milk). We shop the "circular" - not partial to brand names unless the quality/value outweighs the price, yes, we use "coupons" too, and sparingly use BJ's warehouse club (shopping in there can get out of control if you don't watch it), limit purchases of "junk". Shop at vegetable/fruit markets - much cheaper than mass-market shopping stores and do not shop in NYC (otherwise could easily be a double per month). If the sale is really good and we have the space - we load "up" - that works well for toiletries you know you will be using as long as you eat (hint..hint, lol). Last but not least, go shopping on a full stomach as to not fall victim to "impulse, I'm hungry and I want it NOW purchases". We rarely eat out - no time/patience with young child. We cook,bake,broil or grill - little, if any processed food purchases.

In the summer time, we eat what we grow (all except the grass that is, that I leave for the local animals). Who said Bogleheads don't share? :D
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Clearly_Irrational » Mon Apr 23, 2012 3:42 pm

1) We shop at Winco, the local low price retailer. (They're cheaper than Walmart or anything else within driving distance)

2) We pay attention to unit prices and buy in bulk where it's cheaper

3) We buy off brand products except for the few cases where that drastically affects taste/quality

4) We buy a half side of beef once of year from a local farmer (it's cheaper than buying it at the supermarket, especially when you consider the cuts we get)

5) We buy extra items when they're on sale and store them for later use

Despite all that the two of us averaged about $865 a month for the last year. That includes everything we buy at the store including toiletries, cleaning products and pet food (2 dogs, 1 cat).

Eating healthy just isn't cheap darn it!

Food inflation has been killer the last few years. We had squeezed a $950/month budget all the way down below $600, but then inflation just kept rising and there just isn't anything else to squeeze.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby rr2 » Mon Apr 23, 2012 3:42 pm

About $500 for two per month which includes household cleaning products, paper goods etc. We live in a high cost state (Hawaii), for eg., Milk is $5-6/gallon, eggs are $5/dozen etc. Food costs can be 50% higher than the mainland ==> Paradise tax ;)
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby boglestan » Mon Apr 23, 2012 4:03 pm

About 525/mo for 2 adults, a 6 year old, and a 6 month old. Food only -- not including toiletries etc. Located in the Pacific NW.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby mr.ajandkj » Mon Apr 23, 2012 4:30 pm

We budget $400/month for a family of 6, 2 adults, 4 kids ages 11,6,4,2 months. Sometimes a little over, but that also includes some toiletries, cleaners, etc.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Grt2bOutdoors » Mon Apr 23, 2012 4:52 pm

mr.ajandkj wrote:We budget $400/month for a family of 6, 2 adults, 4 kids ages 11,6,4,2 months. Sometimes a little over, but that also includes some toiletries, cleaners, etc.


Wow! How do you manage to swing that, especially with growing kids?
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Clearly_Irrational » Mon Apr 23, 2012 5:19 pm

GRT2BOUTDOORS wrote:
mr.ajandkj wrote:We budget $400/month for a family of 6, 2 adults, 4 kids ages 11,6,4,2 months. Sometimes a little over, but that also includes some toiletries, cleaners, etc.


Wow! How do you manage to swing that, especially with growing kids?


Only way I can think of is very frugal shopping and a TON of carbs. Lots of rice, potatoes and pasta will stretch any budget.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Jerilynn » Mon Apr 23, 2012 5:21 pm

According to Quicken, I've spent $333.10 a month over the last 12 months.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby gkaplan » Mon Apr 23, 2012 5:24 pm

I'm single. I spend about seventy-five dollars a week on groceries. Sometimes it approaches one hundred dollars a week. Sometimes it's more like sixty dollars a week. Those figures include things like toiletries, though. Also I very seldom eat out.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby CaliJim » Mon Apr 23, 2012 5:29 pm

I suspect this thread will be subject to selection bias.... as in... I spend so much more than the numbers listed here that I'm embarrassed to say how much we spend at the grocery store.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby ddunca1944 » Mon Apr 23, 2012 6:10 pm

Van wrote:As much as I want! It is wonderful to be retired, financially secure and not have to be concerned about such things. To all of you young investors out there: this is what you are striving for.



We're retired, financially secure and want to stay that way.

We budget $575/mo for two people. That is just for food (does not include eating out, housewares, pet food or cleaning supplies. Trips to Costco are broken out into food and other categories).

We usually spend und that amount except during nov and adec. Then we go over. While we eat well, I do plan meals, "shop" from the pantry and freezer, and use a list when buying food. We live in a fairly HCOLA.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby yobria » Mon Apr 23, 2012 6:23 pm

ddunca1944 wrote:
Van wrote:As much as I want! It is wonderful to be retired, financially secure and not have to be concerned about such things. To all of you young investors out there: this is what you are striving for.



We're retired, financially secure and want to stay that way.

We budget $575/mo for two people. That is just for food (does not include eating out, housewares, pet food or cleaning supplies. Trips to Costco are broken out into food and other categories).


That's about what I spend for two people, groceries only. I don't skimp on quality food. Fortunately there are a lot of lower cost options for that in the Bay Area, no Whole Foods required.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby mr.ajandkj » Mon Apr 23, 2012 6:54 pm

Clearly_Irrational wrote:
GRT2BOUTDOORS wrote:
mr.ajandkj wrote:We budget $400/month for a family of 6, 2 adults, 4 kids ages 11,6,4,2 months. Sometimes a little over, but that also includes some toiletries, cleaners, etc.


Wow! How do you manage to swing that, especially with growing kids?


Only way I can think of is very frugal shopping and a TON of carbs. Lots of rice, potatoes and pasta will stretch any budget.


Actually, we eat a mostly "paleo" diet, so very little in the way of processed carbs, though the kids eat more carbs than the wife and I do. We cook most all our own meals, lots of veggies, a good amount of fruit. Our budget is starting to creep up as the kids are getting older.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Clearly_Irrational » Mon Apr 23, 2012 7:03 pm

mr.ajandkj wrote:Actually, we eat a mostly "paleo" diet, so very little in the way of processed carbs, though the kids eat more carbs than the wife and I do. We cook most all our own meals, lots of veggies, a good amount of fruit. Our budget is starting to creep up as the kids are getting older.


That's amazing, I'd love to know how you do it! We're pretty careful shoppers and we end up paying nearly double that for less people. We do live in a medium sized metro area but as far as I know Portland, OR isn't super expensive grocery wise compared to other metro areas.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby HornedToad » Mon Apr 23, 2012 7:08 pm

~$400/mo for 2. Excluding dining out.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby soaring » Mon Apr 23, 2012 7:10 pm

I'm not sure if the question has been asked but my grocery bill includes everything for the household including cleaning supplies, toilet paper, shampoo, etc so if that is what is meant...our retired two runs about $600 month. I have tracked this for 10+ years and remove beer and wine bought at the grocery store but everything else is included. We seldom eat out....been there done that.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby mickeyd » Mon Apr 23, 2012 7:43 pm

According to the Spend Anlyzer on my Discover card account, we (2) spent $6708 at supermarkets during the last 12 months. Not all food for sure, but most of it was.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Toons » Mon Apr 23, 2012 7:46 pm

bout 350,2 people :happy
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby 64415 » Mon Apr 23, 2012 7:58 pm

CaliJim wrote:I suspect this thread will be subject to selection bias.... as in... I spend so much more than the numbers listed here that I'm embarrassed to say how much we spend at the grocery store.


Well, someone has to step up to the plate and be the outlier. We have a family of 6 and send $1600 per month. $300 per month goes to Similac hyperalimentum due to a soy and dairy intolerance, (breast milk was insufficient at 6 months).
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby frequentT » Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:22 pm

We spend ~$650/month which includes paper goods, supplies and about $60/mo. on costco wine. We eat a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables and fish which seem to be the expensive items. Not much on packaged processed foods except pasta. :D
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby imagardener » Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:34 pm

$425/month for everything (2 adults). Rarely eat out because we are retired, I like to cook using top quality organic meat and dairy and fresh seafood. I really thought we spent more because I never price shop (but do buy lots when my favorites are on sale) but spouse just did our annual expense report and was surprised it wasn't more. We do not eat a lot of carbs and follow a modified Paleo diet (high protein-low carb)- dinner is a protein and a salad or vegetable. Seems like the older we get the less we eat so why not eat well.

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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby Userdc » Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:43 pm

64415 wrote:Well, someone has to step up to the plate and be the outlier. We have a family of 6 and send $1600 per month. $300 per month goes to Similac hyperalimentum due to a soy and dairy intolerance, (breast milk was insufficient at 6 months).



If it makes you feel better, family of four:

$800/month groceries
$800/month eating out
$300/month lunches for 2 office workers
$400/month for hypoallergenic formula
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby ruralavalon » Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:59 pm

For 2 people:
$460/mo. at grocery store (includes non-grocery items);
$295/mo. eating at restaurants.
$754/mo. total
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby 555 » Mon Apr 23, 2012 9:13 pm

I have absolutely no idea.
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby teniralc » Mon Apr 23, 2012 9:20 pm

$900-1000 per month, family of four (two parents, two children)
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Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

Postby BHCadet » Mon Apr 23, 2012 9:24 pm

For us as a family of 4 last year, we spent $6,628 on groceries or $552 per month.
And we also spent $5,430 or $452/month for dinning out.
So, it would be $12,058 total or $1,005/month.
However, since our son is away for college, it was actually 3 of us most the time.
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