Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Going Organic

I mentioned that I used all organic products when I made my sugar cookies in another post. I wanted to touch on that subject. Organic products are definitely better. There's no doubt about that. Not only are they better for us, but it's better for our environment when we grow food free of GMOs and pesticides.

Sure, the general public would love to have products free of GMOs and pesticides. Most often, the problem people face is the price of organic products. They aren't sure how to get around the cost of organic living. There are many key factors in how converting to organic living can be extremely minimal in cost.

1. Gradually switch your products. I started switching all of my conventional products for organic products a while back. It took a bit of time to cycle through things, like sugar or flour, but the majority of my products are now organic. I have a few spices that aren't organic, but once they are empty, I will switch them as well. If I had thrown everything out and replaced everything, the cost would have been astronomical.

2. Research! Research! Research! Learn to recognize the different brands. Compare and contrast the products you are interested in purchasing. Learn to differentiate between "natural" and "organic" because they are absolutely NOT the same. Plus, both "natural" and "organic" products cost more, but you are losing out on true organic products when you choose "natural" produce.

3. If possible, try to locate a local organic grower, meat/dairy farm or farmer's market. Not only is it fresher and better for your family, you can support your local farmer. It's our responsibility to support our community. How can we do that if we are sending our money elsewhere? I recommend this for every city, state, country, etc. Support your community.

4. If you can, create a sustainable food source for your family or just yourself by planting a garden. In terms of cost, it's relatively cheap - I mean, really cheap - when done properly. I grew up extremely poor and we had a huge garden. You just have to know what you're doing. Start with a few things and add more as you establish the garden. The added benefit is that you know exactly what went into your garden. You don't have to wonder if the grocer labeled conventional apples with organic labels because they were out of the apples you wanted. See how that works?

5. Have it delivered to your door. There are many companies around the nation that deliver organic produce to your door, such as Full Circle, Farm Fresh To You, Shop Organic, and Annie's Buying Club. There are SO MANY out there - with lots of wonderful prices. You might even find a community-supported agricultural program. How wonderful and convenient is that?  

6. There are other options such as a buying club or a co-op. LocalHarvest is a good website for checking out these options.

7. Buy your organic products in bulk. BJ's, Sam's Club and Costco might carry the organic products you desire. Again - check out the company and verify the details. Personally, I shop at BJ's and they have started carrying more organic products than in the past. It's great and the price is fair.

8. Buy your products around your menu. Create a weekly/monthly menu and stick with it.

9. Are you spending money on unnecessary foods like candy bars or chips? You might need to rethink your entire food budget. Sometimes we don't count that dollar spent on a bag of chips. Don't leave it out. It ALL counts.

10. Buy a lot while it's in-season. Then, freeze the extras. It's the same as purchasing frozen fruit or vegetables, except you can freeze it yourself.

These are just a few ways to simplify going organic. There's more to it, but this is a solid set of tips that will help you get started. It's not nearly as expensive or difficult as some people make it out to be. Hope this helps!

Questions? Do you have any tips for going organic? Feel free to leave a comment below! Like what you see? Subscribe to my blog!

Thanks for reading! Many blessings!

~ Crystal ~

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