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5 ways to go organic without breaking the bank

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You are thinking of converting to organic, but the costs worry you? Here’s how to proceed without leaving your shirt!

Why convert to organic?

If you find yourself skeptical at the supermarket, hesitating between organic apples and others, think about this: regular apples may be less expensive, but they can have a high social and environmental cost.

“Agriculture leaves an important ecological footprint,” says Laura Telford, National Director of Canada’s Organic Farmers Group . By seeking to put products on the market quickly, or can ignore the social and environmental costs involved. All these elements add up and end up having a big impact on our health. ”

Here’s how to convert to organic without breaking the bank.

1. A garden in your yard

“What you can do best is develop a relationship with food and gardening,” says Telford. Regardless of whether you grow herbs on the window sill or tomatoes in your yard, cultivating your own products allows you to develop better eating habits and otherwise consider food. It is not very expensive to buy a little land and seeds, and in the end you will have the satisfaction of preparing dishes with the products of your garden, grown without pesticides.

2. The rhythm of the seasons

Have you ever noticed that the supermarket strawberry tray costs more in February than last July. Consuming the seasonal products can lighten the total of your grocery bill. “Fruits and vegetables are the first organic products we start buying because they are cheap and often produced locally,” says Telford. Public markets are a good place to find fresh and seasonal produce. To make sure that what you are buying is indeed organic, do not hesitate to ask the producer for proof of organic certification, if it is not displayed. No producer of organic products will hesitate to show you his certificate. And shop around for the best value for money.

3. From the producer to the table

You will do your first bio tests usually with fruits and vegetables that are not expensive; but for meat, it’s something else. “Meat is the most expensive part of the organic basket, which is why Telford recommends buying directly from the farmer, a more economical choice.” Buying in bulk allows you to fill the freezer with a variety of cuts, an economical and efficient solution for planning the weekly menu.

4. A family farmer

The delivery of organic baskets is a service that is gaining popularity: a simple, affordable formula. Équiterre’s family farmer program allows 30,000 Quebecers to receive organic fruits and vegetables and other products each week in a basket that can be adapted to their family size. These delivery services are well suited to a time when everyone lacks time and as a bonus, they can make you discover products that you would have ignored at your supermarket. On the Internet, you will easily find a farm to stock up and a drop off point for delivery.

5. One step at a time

If you decide to convert to organic, it is not necessary to mess up all of your pantry. Just start by replacing the products treated with a lot of pesticides by their bio equivalent. The US Working Group on the Environment has published its list of “twelve bastards” on which celery, peaches, strawberries, apples and blueberries are top; avocados, onions and sweet corn are in a category that includes a little less pesticides.

Although buying organic has a certain financial sacrifice, Ms. Telford suggests taking a broad view. “Food is the foundation of our health. We can not afford to save on this aspect. ”

Dr. Monika Mathur

Ph.D Yale University

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