Welcome to the October 2014 Natural Living Blog Carnival: Advocating for Our Food Supply.
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Natural Living Blog Carnival hosted by Happy Mothering and the Green Moms Network. Since October is Non-GMO Month, National Farm to School Month and Fair Trade Month, we are naturally talking about our food supply. Be sure to read all of the other posts listed at the bottom of mine! You may find stories about why it’s important to eat organic, support non-GMO awareness (and labeling), grow your own food and eat a real food diet. You may also find some new recipes or learn what real foods or gadgets are staples in our members’ kitchens. This month it’s all about food!
I feel like people judge me when I talk about buying natural and organic foods. It is important to me that my family eat organic and non-GMO foods. I read ingredient lists before I buy and I try to shop at trusted locations. I think choosing where you shop allows you to be a little more in control about what your family consumes.
When I mention shopping at Whole Foods, I get the look that people think I am spending all my money there. I do have to admit that when I do shop at Whole Foods, sometimes I see something that I really want to try, so I splurge and buy it, but for the most part, I stick with what is on my shopping list.
I recently went on a Moms Meet Tour of Whole Foods and the main goal of the tour was to learn how organic foods are decently priced when they are on sale. The two focus words for the tour were “SALE” and “ORGANIC”. I learned that it is possible to shop their without spending your whole paycheck.
I also learned that Whole Foods has high standards on where they get their non-organic produce. This means that even though it isn’t certified organic, it isn’t sprayed with pesticides, and is non-GMO. One thing I appreciate at Whole Foods is that they take coupons. They have their own store coupons you can find online and in their store, and they will take manufacturers coupons. Anybody knows that if you have a coupon AND the item is on sale, then you score big!
On the tour, it was brought to our attention that bulk items are consistently cheaper than its prepacked counterpart. Randomly a prepackaged item will be on sale or have a coupon so it will be cheaper, but the bulk bin should always be one of your stops. Also, the bulk bin has a faster turnover, so your purchase is a little fresher than the prepackaged product.
Another place I trust with my shopping is Trader Joe’s I appreciate the wide selection of organic foods and their non-GMO commitment. The only problem is that Trader Joe’s doesn’t have coupons for their own products, so the price you see will always be the price you get. In my opinion, most of their food is decently priced. I also love their sample area because I get to try new things before I buy them!
Our local Co-Op is another great place to buy organic foods. Their regular prices tend to be a little higher on certain products, but again, I look for the items that are on sale. My Co-Op also has their own coupons as well as they accept manufacturers coupons. So you can end up with a pretty sweet deal! Co-Ops have other benefits, like local events and even a Kids Club! Our Co-Op serves as a learning center for my whole family. So far we have learned about local and sustainable food, as well as gone to tastings and educational events.
So NO, I’m not saying you have to go to every store, every week just to get the great deals. But plan ahead. Check out the sales ahead of time, as well as the coupons. Plan your menu accordingly for the week. Go to the one store that will best fit your needs for the week.
If eating organic and non-GMO is important to you, then you might have to spend a little time figuring out how to spend your money. But trust me! This small amount of time is worth it when you know your family is eating food that only benefits their bodies!
Please take some time to enjoy the posts our other carnival participants have contributed: