Almost seven in 10 food and grocery shoppers (68%) said they were now prioritising saving money, the IGD ShopperVista research revealed.
The poll revealed 42% of shoppers have visited two or more supermarkets in the same shopping trip during the last month, 48% are reducing food waste to save money and 29% have paid for their shopping in two parts to benefit from a loyalty scheme or promotion over the last year.
Nearly half of consumers (46%) say planning and budgeting is a higher priority now, with 57% of those with children - regardless of social class - saying they put more effort into their shopping to maintain quality while keeping costs down.
IGD chief executive Joanne Denney-Finch said: "Just because people are interested in saving money it doesn't mean they have to compromise on the quality of their food. Smart shoppers are finding imaginative ways to save money and maintain quality at the same time.
"As well as planning better, reducing food waste and cooking from scratch, shoppers are becoming more creative. This includes going to more than one store in a single shopping trip, as they continue to find ways to secure the best value during the downturn.
"The best companies are working with shoppers to help them stretch their money further without sacrificing quality."
IGD surveyed 1,000 consumers between March 1 and March 31.