Since watching the new TLC show Extreme Couponing, I have had this nagging question. Will the show create a surge of penny pinching coupon divas?
Probably not. Unless you are completely organized like those featured on the show, it is unlikely that you will have 97% savings each visit. A few of the individuals on the show mentioned having years worth
of food. Are they able to use all that before the expiration dates? I think it's great not having to spend any money on canned goods, pasta and
toiletries. The shelf life for most of these items can be several years.
"If you donate food to charity, you can deduct the amount that you spent
to purchase the food or the "fair market value" if you grew or made it
I can imagine many organizations can use all the help they can get. Extreme couponing could be a great resource and I know many are already actively donating--although as DealPro Donna Freedman pointed out in a recent post, the TLC show only portrays one side of the story and doesn't show how many extreme couponers regularly donate food and toiletries to charity.
In fact, DealPro Tiffany Ivanovsky of MyLitter, who was featured on a recent episode of Extreme Couponing, coordinated the donation of hygiene kits to help people affected by the disaster in Japan. And Stephanie Nelson, aka "Coupon Mom," started her popular website not only to help people save money on groceries, but to facilitate her Cut Out Hunger program.
What a great way to give back! Here are some other ways to turn those freebies and savings into charitable donations:
This program distributes food every Friday to approximately 400 students in the Bridgeport area. If none of these programs are local, check out the nearby food pantries that accept food donations in your neighborhood!
Do you use any of your couponing bounty to help out charities? Tell how and who you donate to in the comments.