Organic is good but will it break the bank?

Choosing organic food means you’re taking care of your own health and the planet’s.

Go organic and stay on budget

Choosing organic food means you’re not only taking care of your own health but that of the planet. You’re choosing to support organic farmers, producers and processors who are doing the right thing for workers, animals and the environment. In short, you’re helping to build a sustainable future for all Australians.

Many commercial pesticides remain on our food no matter how much we wash and cook them. Eating organic fruit and vegetables is the only way to totally avoid these nasty chemicals.

When you eat organic, you tend to get closer to the source, which means you’re probably eating food that has been harvested more recently rather than food that’s been in cold storage for long periods of time. This likely results in higher nutritional value.

And yet, the cost of organic food is such that many people struggle to afford going totally organic at home. The good news is that going organic doesn’t have to break the bank – as awareness and demands grow, organic food becomes increasingly available in supermarkets, local shops and at farmers’ markets. This means you can include organic food in your grocery shop without changing your weekly routine.

In celebration of Organic Awareness Month in September, we share five ways you can eat organic without breaking the bank.

1. Buy better meat and eat less of it
As Aussies, we love our meat and tend to eat it in large amounts. The Australian government health guideline recommends we eat a maximum of seven serves of meat per week – in smaller portions than most of us are used to. 

To start, switch to organic free range meat once or twice per week. Choosing cuts such as shoulder or belly can make a big difference to your wallet – and they’re delicious! You can gradually increase the number of organic portions as your confidence in organic food grows.

2. Go for organic dairy
If you’re new to organic food, milk is a great place to start because it’s easy to obtain and affordable, as most supermarkets stock it. The organic farming process produces milk with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids and a healthier balance of omega-6.

3. Stock up on canned goods
Drop into your local organic food store sometime and you’ll find that organic canned goods, such as beans, corn, tomatoes and coconut milk are similarly priced (if not cheaper) than non-organic supermarket varieties. Buying in bulk when grocery stores have discounts is a thrifty option.

4. Choose in-season fruit and veggies
Going organic with your fruit and veggies is often the hardest step because this is where the cost difference is most noticeable. Buying in-season can help significantly because that’s when certain fruits and vegetables are in abundance. You can also sign up for an organic box service, such as Doorstep Organics and Go Organic, which delivers seasonal and organic fruit and veggies to your doorstep for a great price. Another alternative is visiting farmers’ markets once or twice per month to stock up on organic produce.

5. Grow your own at home
Not everyone has the time to tend their own veggie patch but one thing is for sure – the best way to ensure that what ends up on your table is organic is to grow it yourself. If you can’t manage a whole garden, growing your own herbs is also a great option. There’s nothing nicer than picking fresh herbs from the garden for free!

Bonus suggestion
If you really take to the organic life and you have a small backyard, a chicken can provide you with free-range organic eggs for life. And she’ll double as a low-maintenance pet!

Do you buy organic food? How do you make it affordable?

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    COMMENTS

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    Karl Marx
    21st Sep 2018
    12:42pm
    I live in Thailand where we go to the local market 2 to 3 times a week and buy fresh meat, seafood, veg & fruit. All organic or close to it or buy from the little shops dotted around the neighbourhood. All within a 2 to 5 minute walk.
    I have noticed too, benefits to my health & weight and even my eczema has cleared up completely after only a month.
    A lot of issues with children these days like ADHD are most likely attributed to the chemicals etc that remain on our foods even after washing & cooking as well as all the processed foods we tend to eat.
    I know there are many organic farmers markets back in OZ & their produce & meats were reasonably priced compared to supermarkets, but didn’t last as long (wonder why). Most people say they are to time strapped to go to markets once a week & it’s easier to do the supermarkets. This is only a mind set, like everything else you have to make the effort & commitment. What price is good health? It’s worth its weight in gold as far as I’m concerned.
    musicveg
    21st Sep 2018
    7:56pm
    I have been buying organic for years, saves me heaps in medical bills, I never go to a doctor, and have stay healthy on a wholefood, no oil, low fat,plant-based diet.
    I am lucky I have a good supplier which I order from on Fridays and pick-up Mondays, she keeps her prices to near what it costs her. Buys mainly in season and the quality is exceptional. I also grow a few vegies is spring/summer, leafy greens and herbs to supplement. The supermarkets have the most expensive organic and the lowest quality, but sometimes they are good and price is on par, good to keep an eye out for specials.
    Buying meat and dairy organic is not going to change the way animals are used for food. All this grass fed, free range stuff is still cruelty to animals. They still take the calf's away from their mothers to make milk for humans too. Cows are such social-able and sensitive creatures and they suffer greatly.


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