Organix is passionate about giving little ones the best start in life. We know how important first tastes are in laying a healthy framework for children, to last the rest of their lives.
And first tastes are key in developing their precious palates. We also know that the world of food can be a minefield for new parents who want nothing but the best for their little ones, whilst also choosing the best that the planet has to offer.
So we’ve put together a guide, to help steer parents in the right direction when choosing what’s both good for the planet, AND good for you. This includes striving to eat foods that follow the seasons (avoiding unnecessary air or freight miles in the process), and ways to eat organically without breaking the bank.
How to go Organic for Less – Following the seasons
Want strawberries in winter? Or a bunch of asparagus in autumn? The British growing season for these products might be short, but as consumers, we can get hold of pretty much anything we want, 365 days a year, from all major supermarkets, who can provide produce from all four corners of the earth at what seem like reasonable prices. But there is a price to our planet.
We’ve grown accustomed to having whatever food we want, no matter what time of year. And getting out-of-season produce to the UK means flying it in, and whether it’s blueberries from Peru, or green beans from Kenya, the air miles are huge. Food that travels far is also often wrapped in a lot of plastic packaging to avoid it being damaged in transit.
In addition, pesticides and fertilisers or energy intensive heated greenhouses are sometimes used to force crops to grow beyond their natural cycle to be available year-round. Pesticides are not only known to be a key driver of insect and bee decline, but they can also leave a residue on the fruit and veg, even after washing.
How to go Organic for Less – What are the benefits of eating seasonally?
Eating seasonally means eating foods that are naturally ready to harvest at the same time of year that you are eating them. And seasonal eating, rather than just relying on it being locally grown, is key.
A salad box might be locally grown, but if it has been grown under plastic, it will have required heating, lighting and artificial pesticides to flourish, leaving a negative footprint on our planet.
Produce that is grown seasonally are also often more affordable, as they haven’t had to be imported, and are more readily available during that month. Buying directly from a farm shop or a fruit & veg box scheme can be a great way to help you munch month by month.
How to go Organic for Less – Protect the planet, eat organic!
Seasonal eating is one way of reducing your environmental impact. Eating organic is another.
In fact, eating organic has many wonderful benefits; it’s good for us, the planet, wildlife and animals. And research shows that organic crops are of a much higher nutritional quality than their non organic equivalents.* It has also shown that eating organic foods can lead to an increased intake of antioxidants – which are nutritionally very beneficial.
What’s more, no herbicides are used in organic farming, which also includes virtually no pesticides. This majorly reduces the effect on British wildlife as well as reducing pollution to our soils, waterways and air. So by choosing organic over intensive farming conditions it provides more suitable habitats for wildlife such as insects including bees which are crucial for pollination!
How to go Organic for Less – Our guide to eating organic without breaking the bank!
Many parents see eating organic produce as a luxury that can be difficult to justify when it is at risk of being refused at the dinner table and meals can end up in the bin.
But it doesn’t have to be the case. When it comes to fresh fruits and vegetables, organic foods often taste better. Try a taste test between an organic carrot and non organic supermarket carrot, we bet you’ll notice a difference!
10 simple hacks to get organic food for less
We’ve put together these top ten simple hacks to get organic food for less, to help you navigate your way to a healthier, organic based diet for less than you might think:
- Check prices – you may be surprised to find that some organic items cost the same or similar to non-organic, especially supermarket’s own brand ranges
- Start small – just add 1 or 2 organic items to your shopping basket, such as essentials like onions, carrots, potatoes and bananas
- Choose the ‘Dirty Dozen’ – These are the fruits and veg that are known to have the highest amount of pesticide residue left on the skin once it has been washed and prepared, when grown on a non-organic farm. Strawberries, lemons and pre packed salad are top of the list!
- Grow your own – a money saving and intensely satisfying way to access organic produce, which tastes infinitely better than anything you buy in the shops! Plants can be grown using a good compost free of chemicals on windowsills, window boxes, in a raised bed, in your garden or at an allotment
- Don’t forget your freezer – organic items can be frozen as soon as you get home, which not only means you can prolong their shelf life and stop them heading to the landfill, which means you’re helping reduce food waste too!
- Sign up for a box scheme – organic box schemes provide a cost efficient way to access organic fruit and veg for less
- Don’t overbuy – buy herbs, chillies, lemons and spices, and other foods loose so you don’t over buy as this saves money and reduces food waste
- Use more vegetables and pulses – good quality organic meat and fish usually cost more, so introducing a few more vegetarian meals into your family menu can help save you money
- Buy dried, tinned and frozen organic foods as well as fresh – they’re often cheaper, last longer and can be just as good for you
- Look out for special offers – you can often find some real bargains on fresh organic fruit and vegetables which are close to their recommended use-by date – they’ll be perfect for making homemade smoothies and soups