MINNEAPOLIS - The non-profit consumer advice organization, checkbook.org, is back at it and in its quarterly magazine takes a closer look at the price of groceries and eyewear.

Checkbook's latest supermarket survey compared prices at local stores using a shopping cart of 152 items and compared quality as well as price.

They found that Walmart and Target stores offered the best deals on price.

"We found that those stores were 17-18 percent cheapest in some cases, than the Cub stores," explained Checkbook.org's Robert Krughoff.

Using Cub and Rainbow food stores as a baseline for spending 150 dollars per week, a shopper would save more than $1,000 dollars annually if the purchases were made at Walmart or Target.

In contrast, if you shopped at the higher end chains, you would easily spend more than a $1,000 extra per year and in the case of Whole Foods more than $4,000.

But, according to the survey, you get what you pay for.

"The quality of fresh produce, fresh meat were better at Byerly's, Lunds and Kowalski's."

The survey also found stores like Costco and Sam's Club offered a savings of 10-15 percent when it comes to bulk items like paper towels.

But it's the optical department at both Costco and Sam's Club that really shined, besides going online, they have the cheapest prices when it comes to contact lenses, no other store comes close.

The same couldn't be said for eyeglasses. The survey found that Healthpartners Optical Shops were the best deal. The shops can be found in select clinics across the Twin Cities and are open to the public.

Check out checkbook.org for more Twin Cities price advice.

For a limited time you can access the grocery store results for free through this link.

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