Lower prices, better value: YES! gives stateside commissary patrons more options for consistent savings
FORT LEE, Va. – It would be simple for commissaries to slap a savings tag on its items and ignore the marketplace off the installation.
However, through its Your Everyday Savings! (YES!) program, the Defense Commissary Agency is discarding the easy route to ensure its patrons have even more options to save, said Army Command Sgt. Maj. Tomeka N. O’Neal, DeCA’s senior enlisted advisor to the agency director.
“With YES! we’re providing low prices year-round to help defeat any notion that the commissary benefit isn’t the best value for our patrons,” O’Neal said.
Since the program began in June 2018, YES! has steadily expanded to nearly 800 of the most popular items bought by stateside commissary patrons. Variable pricing makes the program possible, allowing the agency to lower prices on trending items that retailers often reduce temporarily as “loss leaders” to attract customers into their stores hoping they’ll buy their higher-priced products.
Bright orange shelf labels and signs highlight these products on store shelves. These items include popular brands of flavored iced teas, pasta, macaroni and cheese, Spam, yogurt, cereal, oatmeal, baby food, nutritional shakes, potato chips and other selected snack foods, apple juice, vegetable juice, coffee creamer, coffee, energy drinks, soup, bananas, oranges, tomatoes, avocadoes, paper towels, toilet tissue, bottled water, dish soap, fabric softener and pet food.
Through the end of March, commissary patrons have embraced the program in a big way with nearly 30 percent of all transactions coming from the YES! inventory.
“This program isn’t just a snapshot in time,” said Hector Granado, DeCA’s marketing director. “We are making YES! prices and savings more consistent for our patrons.” He added that the prices for these items can also dip even lower during promotional periods.
For O’Neal, YES! is yet another reason she preaches to patrons that the commissary is their best option.
“Even without this program, the savings at your commissary are worth the trip,” O’Neal said. “However, with YES!, a good thing gets even better and this is another example of how we are committed to giving our patrons the best consistent, everyday savings possible when compared to retailers outside the gate.”
Note: Customers and DeCA leaders discuss the YES! program on DeCA’s YouTube site:
- 2LT Jonathan Button
- 2LT Rodre Seals
- Retiree Chuck Mullins
- Retiree Bill Hines
- Special Assistant for Commissary Operations Robert J. Bianchi
About DeCA: The Defense Commissary Agency operates a worldwide chain of commissaries providing groceries to military personnel, retirees and their families in a safe and secure shopping environment. Commissaries provide a military benefit, saving authorized patrons thousands of dollars annually on their purchases compared to similar products at commercial retailers. The discounted prices include a 5-percent surcharge, which covers the costs of building new commissaries and modernizing existing ones. A core military family support element, and a valued part of military pay and benefits, commissaries contribute to family readiness, enhance the quality of life for America’s military and their families, and help recruit and retain the best and brightest men and women to serve their country.