Choosing to go organic means eating food that hasn’t been treated with chemicals such as pesticides, preservatives and colourants. An organic diet has a range of benefits – it can be healthier for the body and better for the environment. Living organically has become trendier which has made it easier for adopt this lifestyle. Here are some tips for anyone wanting to go organic.
Visit farmers markets
Local farmers markets are a great place for buying the freshest food available. They also give you a chance to speak directly with growers so that you can be certain that the food you’re buying isn’t treated with pesticides or antibiotics. Food here is also generally affordable – often as equal as what you’ve get in a supermarket. Look for farmer’s markets local to you and give them a try.
Shop at organic retailers
There are many grocers and stores that specialise in selling organic produce. Targeting these can give you certainty that the food you’re buying is chemical-free. If you’re not sure, ask whether your grocer uses an organic vegetable supplier. You may even be able to buy food straight from a wholesaler.
If there aren’t any organic stores near to where you live, you can always try shopping online. There are many online stores that specialise in this produce with access to all kinds of foods. Shopping online can sometimes be cheaper, although you do have to factor in delivery costs.
Grow your own food
A great way to be certain that your food is organic is to grow it yourself. You could create a vegetable patch in your garden or build a greenhouse. Even if you don’t have a garden, there are many plants and vegetables that you can grow indoors. Growing your own produce certainly takes a lot more work than going to a store, but it can save you money and can be a rewarding hobby. There are many places online where you can buy seeds. Do your research so that you can provide the best growing conditions for each plant – there are plenty of chemical-free ways to deter pests and boost growth.
Be careful of organic food label terms
Supermarkets now stock huge ranges of organic foods and plenty of restaurants have organic options. That said, you should be careful of the terms used. Terms like ‘made from organic traces’ can be deceiving – whilst this food may contain organic ingredients, the fact that it’s only ‘traces’ means that there could still be non-organic ingredients or processes used (USDA laws state that these products must be at least 70% organic). Even products labelled ‘organic’ aren’t always fully organic and can contain 95% organic ingredients – only products labelled ‘100% organic’ are fully chemical free. Of course, opting for these foods over non-organic foods is still likely to make a big difference.
Save money by shopping seasonal
Organic foods can come with a premium price tag – particularly non-seasonal foods that need to be imported. Such foods would usually be treated with preservatives allowing them to be stored for longer periods or shipped over using slower methods. Non-seasonal organic foods may have to be shipped over by air to keep them fresh, which means higher import costs and higher pricing as a result of this. By sticking largely to seasonal foods that are grown locally, you can often save a lot of money.
Take advantage of discounts
It’s possible to also bring down the cost of an organic lifestyle by making use of discounts.
‘Scratch and dents’ is a term used to describe vegetables and fruit that is misshapen or scratched – there’s usually nothing wrong with this produce other than the fact that it may look less pleasing. Many stores only buy the best-looking produce, but there are some stores where you can buy these ‘scratch and dents’, usually for much cheaper.
There are also many online sites where you can find vouchers that can save you money on organic shopping. Many of these coupons can be used in major retailers where organic food usually comes with a premium price. Such vouchers usually have an expiry date so make sure to use them before they run out.