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Five Ways to Eat Organic on a Budget
In this day and age, when most of our food supply is genetically-modified and/or doused with pesticides, buying organic is more important than ever. However, organic food can be expensive and many people may feel overwhelmed by the idea of switching from conventionally-grown food to organically-grown. While it is pricey, there are ways to eat organic on a budget. Check out these five tips to help you save money on organic food.
- Buy in Bulk
Many big box and warehouse stores sell organic food in bulk. This comes in handy when purchasing individually-wrapped organic snacks for school, such as granola bars, or mini bags of popcorn. You can also buy bulk amounts of organic food at many supermarkets where bins full of cereals, nuts, and dried fruits are available to purchase by the pound. And lastly, online is another way to go. Simply search “bulk organic food” and you’ll find great deals.
- Grow Your Own
Even if you don’t have a green thumb, or the space to grow large amounts of fruits and vegetables, everyone has room for a few pots of dirt in which to grow organic herbs. Herbs such as basil, oregano, cilantro, and dill are all easy to grow indoors and nothing could be fresher than clipping your own fresh herbs to add to a recipe. If you have the room for more containers, or the land to grow produce, do so. Just be sure you buy organic seeds and use organic soil when planting.
A lot of people are under the misconception that no coupons exist for organic food. This is simply untrue. Check the flier when you enter a store to see if there are coupons for the organic food you’re seeking to purchase. Also, go straight to the source by checking the website of a particular brand you want to buy. You can also write to the company who owns the brand you’re interested in and ask for a coupon or discount. It’s worth a try!
- Join a CSA
Research local certified-organic farms and find one that offers a CSA. CSA stands for “community supported agriculture”. Various families from your community “buy in” to a CSA to support the farmer’s time, labor, and supplies, and in return, they get a share of the harvest. CSAs are a wonderful way to try new foods and recipes that you normally wouldn’t, because often, the weekly shares are pre-boxed by the farmer with whatever s/he has on hand. If there isn’t a certified-organic farm in the area, contact local farms to ask if they use organic practices to grow their food. Many do and simply don’t want to pay the fees to become officially certified.
- Buy Local
If you’re not interested in the commitment required by joining a CSA, you can still reap the rewards of buying from local organic farms, or at regional farmer’s markets. This allows you to buy what you want, and the amount appropriate to your family’s needs. Try going to the market closer to closing time as farmers often discount produce, eggs, meat and other items so they don’t have to pack it up and bring it back home.
Buying organic on a budget is completely possible. Using these tips, you’ll be able to save money while feeding your family the healthiest food available. Eating organic food may be more expensive than conventional food, but the benefit to your health is priceless!