11 Dec

5 tips for going organic on a budget

  • December 11, 2015
  • Blog

Firstly let’s start by understanding what organic actually means. When you see a “Certified Organic” seal on your food, the item must have an ingredients list and the contents should be 95% or more certified organic, meaning free of synthetic additives like pesticides, chemical fertilisers, and dyes, and must not be processed using industrial solvents, irradiation, or genetic engineering. The remaining 5% may only be foods or processed with additives on an approved list.

We all agree that one of the most common concerns about choosing or going organic is the cost. Organic foods can be more expensive because farmers have higher labour costs and a different economy of scale; however when buying organic you’re paying the real cost of producing real food that is better for the environment, animal welfare and our health.

Follow these 5 tips to stay within budget and help you go organic.

1. Buy in season

When fruits and vegetables are in season they’re usually more available and therefore cheaper. Eating in season encourages you to enjoy a variety of nutritious fruits and vegetables, including different types and colours, and legumes or beans. The benefit of consuming a variety of foods comes from maximising the bioavailability (absorption, metabolism and retention) of nutrients. It’s also your best chance of eating food freshly picked.

2. Buy from farmers’ markets

Buying straight from the producer cuts out the middleperson. Markets are also a great source of fresh and local produce. Not only do they limit the transport time of food, but it also tastes better.  Markets also make a great outing for the family and kids love them! Just make sure you look out for a certification logo like Australian Certified Organic or OGA (an organic certification program specifically for small growers).

3. Look for specials at the supermarket

Supporting organic brands in supermarkets increases organic supply in mainstream stores, therefore helping to increase organic demand and keep prices affordable

4. Buy in bulk

Take a bag or container and buy loose items like beans, grains, lentils and nuts in bulk in smaller stores. Team up with a neighbour so you can buy in bulk; split the cost and stash away food.

5. Freeze and re-use

You can just about freeze anything fresh and store it and re-use when you need it. This avoids wastage and helps you save your pennies.