Cheap Ways to Eat Organic

Founded by the Soil Association, Organic September aims to promote all things organic! You can join in by pledging to swap just one everyday product to an organic version this month and maybe, if you like it - forever. Cotton clothing and beauty products can be certified organic but it’s food that is an everyday item many can go organic with.

You might choose organic food for a range of reasons including ethical concerns about the impact of non-organic fertilisers and pesticides on the environment and the belief that organic food tastes better or is better for health. Whatever your reason, going organic doesn’t have to be expensive. Although many products do demand a premium because they are produced in smaller quantities, check out these ideas for cheap eats this Organic September and see how small changes can make a difference.

Look for supermarket deals.

You can pick up organic food in all of the main supermarkets including Aldi and you’ll find promotions on for Organic September. Some products are better value than others, for example, Sainsbury’s So Organic wine costs £6 a bottle, cheaper than many leading brands!

Eat in season.

Scout out your local farm shop or greengrocer and buy local, seasonal products. These may not always be organic so it pays to ask but you’ll save money by cutting down the food miles and packaging.

Go foraging!

There is so much fresh food out there available for free. If you’re new to foraging only pick what you know, for example, now is the perfect time for blackberries. Don’t forage next to busy roads or train lines where the produce could be subject to pollution. You could take a course to learn about wild food and mushroom picking.

Grow your own.

You can be 100% sure your food is organic and food mile free if you’ve grown it yourself. We don’t all have time to tend an allotment but potatoes, beans and tomatoes are great options for beginners. If you live in a flat you can even grow salad leaves or herbs on your windowsill.

Eat less meat.

Organic meat can be really expensive so your best option is just to eat less of it. It’s far more cost efficient to fill up on organic pulses, eggs and vegetables.

Buy store cupboard basics.

Items that are pretty cheap anyway, like pasta and flour, are available in organic versions. Use organic flour to bake your own bread or make a super cheap meal with organic milk to create pancakes – they can be savoury as well as sweet!

The organics industry is well regulated so products can only be advertised as organic if at least 95% of the ingredients are certified. Find out more at www.soilassociation.org

Emma Waight