Eating and Shopping Organic On A Budget

4 min read
Eating and Shopping Organic On A Budget

As a SAHM, running a household on a tight, single income budget but wanting to feed my family the best quality food I possibly can, I have learnt a few tricks for getting my dollar to stretch further while still eating organic wherever possible.

Never buy organic at the supermarket

To the big supermarkets, organic is a promotional buzzword and that means high costs, packaging sizes are also often very small for a lot of money.

 Eat with the season 

Organic produce is only available in season and is cheapest when peaking at it’s best.

Find your local weigh and pay

You know the store with all the clear plastic bins, and giant metal scoops, with foods in bulk and you can purchase anything from 10g to 10kg! These places are your friend! A massive variety, lots of organics in the better ones and it’s always cheaper than buying it in packets elsewhere.

Join your local food co-op 

Co-op’s  are a great way to save money, know where your food is coming from, eat better, fresher, healthier food and make some new friends in the process. My local co-op has an amazing range of fresh fruit and veg, meat, pantry staples, eggs, even toiletries, giving me access to fabulous organics, true free range chicken and eggs, grass fed meat and eco friendly, chemical free personal care all at great co-op prices.

Find your local farmers market

I’m not talking the big indoor markets with all the trinkets and $1 shops, I’m talking the open air, school oval or paddock style markets where farmers have reversed up their trucks and are selling produce they harvested yesterday! These guys don’t charge crazy premiums and you are supporting local families in the process.Eating and Shopping Organic On A Budget

Buy good meat in bulk 

Meat is one of the biggest food expenses in a household, especially if you have a hoard of hungry children! Animals in production farms are treated poorly, pumped full of antibiotics and not fed well and all of this ends up affecting the final product. Grass fed, pasture raised meat is the way to go for the animals health and for ours. Through a co-op or local farmer you can source half or whole animals or cartons of 10-20kg, all different cuts and freeze into meal size portions.

Know your priorities 

Some fruits and vegetables are best eaten organic due to the amount of pesticides used or genetic modification, but some are safe to eat conventionally so there is no need to pay premium price.

Dirty should be eaten organic where possible.

Spinach                        Apples                         Peaches

Lettuce                         Celery                          Potatoes

Nectarine                     Grapes                         Berries of all kinds

Capsicum                     Cucumber                    Tomatoes

Corn nearly always genetically modified if conventional produce!!

Cleanorganic not worth the extra money!

Watermelon                  Onion                           Cabbage

Pineapple                     Peas                             Eggplant

Pumpkin                       Avocado                      Rockmelon

Mushrooms                  Asparagus                    Mango

Banana                         Kiwifruit

A home garden

Using even a small space wisely at home can save you a lot of money over the course of a year. Try to grow more expensive things that you use a lot of and be prepared to preserve your harvest, through blanching,  pickling, drying or bottling. For example, our family eats a lot of broccoli and cauliflower, these are easily grown, don’t attract many bugs and the harvest is easily blanched and frozen for later use. A herb garden is great too as herbs are expensive and often get wasted.

Backyard chicken coop 

We go through at least a carton of eggs a week, sometimes more. Good eggs that are not full of hormones, antibiotics or coming from caged, poorly treated chickens are expensive. We have worked out we are saving at least $350 a year just on eggs and our chickens just eat all our scraps.

Does your family try to eat organic? Do you have any more tips for saving money?

About Author

Jody Allen

Jody is the founder and essence of Stay at Home Mum. An insatiable appetite for reading from a very young age had Jody harbouring dreams of being a pu...Read Moreblished author since primary school. That deep-seeded need to write found its way to the public eye in 2011 with the launch of SAHM. Fast forward 4 years and a few thousand articles Jody has fulfilled her dream of being published in print. With the 2014 launch of Once a Month Cooking and 2015's Live Well on Less, thanks to Penguin Random House, Jody shows no signs of slowing down. The master of true native content, Jody lives and experiences first hand every word of advertorial she pens. Mum to two magnificent boys and wife to her beloved Brendan; Jody's voice is a sure fire winner when you need to talk to Mums. Read Less

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