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organic foodies/people who use veg boxes etc - advise please!!!!!!!

(22 Posts)
lunavix Mon 15-May-06 20:49:32

Dh and I are trying to move over to getting more and more organic foods (and cleaning stuffs for that matter) but our shopping prices are shooting up! Every item seems a minimum of 50p which is skyrocketing the cost of our shop.

We buy most of our stuff from Tescos but are looking at getting fruit and veg boxes delivered, and possibly meat from the same source. Does this generally work out a lot more expensive?? The quality of fruit veg and meat from supermarkets is shocking and we're tired of it. It's depressing that we will probably spend a fortune buying these things though and still have to shop at tesco for the basics.

Is there any way to get better food cheaper or are we just going to pay a massive premium????

tallmummy Mon 15-May-06 20:58:58

We get a large veg box and a fruit box delivered once a week. It costs about £21 and the veg is excellent.
We get ours here

controlfreaky2 Mon 15-May-06 21:00:53

in n london we have weekly delivery from "just organic". excellent quality. masses for #20

FrannyandZooey Mon 15-May-06 21:09:29

If you stop shopping at supermarkets altogether IMO you will save money in the long term. Initially it may cost more as you adjust. But if you stop buying processed food you will save a packet. I'm afraid my method does involve cooking nearly everything from scratch but I am a lazy cook and I manage it. You have to bulk cook and freeze a lot otherwise you are cooking every day. Go over to cooking meals with more filling but cheap ingredients like beans (cooked from dried), lentils, rice, oats, barley etc.

The other reason you save money is that you are not sucked in by all the BOGOF offers, and the other promotions and reductions, that ensure you buy stuff you didn't go in for, and often buy more food than you can actually eat.

Shop around with organic suppliers to find the best prices. I have found it does not save money for me to get a mixed box every week as I then need to go out and buy lots of ingredients to cook something to go with the various veg etc. It works for me to meal plan a week or so in advance and just order the veg and other ingredients I need. My organic man also delivers groceries and I bulk buy from Goodness Direct and Suma for the basics. If you become a regular, high ordering customer you may well find there are discounts available with your local suppliers.

Since deciding to not shop at supermarkets we now spend about the same as we did before, but 90% or more of all the food we eat is organic, we eat much more healthily, and the food tastes so much better (I don't know what they do to the supermarket organic stuff but it tastes crap compared to local grown stuff in season).

Read "Not on the Label" for more inspiration and ideas on how to avoid supermarkets without breaking the bank. HTH and sorry I seem to have written an essay

kayzed Mon 15-May-06 21:13:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

kayzed Mon 15-May-06 21:16:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Gingerbear Mon 15-May-06 21:18:48

We use Able and Cole at the moment, but their small mixed box is £16.50. Just found a Yorkshire based firm that does same sized box for £10, and you can choose what goes in it.

Pruni Mon 15-May-06 21:20:24

Message withdrawn

lunavix Mon 15-May-06 21:59:10

Thanks everyone. Pruni, that's what we want to do, have a rather radical lifestyle change. Quite frankly, I'm sick of tescos, sick of plonking myself in front the tv, but scared the changes are going to cost too much! Particularly as my income will significantly drop in august when new baby is born!

I'm a bit worried we live in a culturally crap area, where it's hard to source anything other than McDonalds or chinese takeaway but I suppose until Dh finds a job we'll have to cope!

kayzed - that sounds good to me although I'm rather anti-Sainsburys! I'd like it to be under £100 a week though (atm we spend about £80) however it's feeding me dh and ds (who's 2 with huge appetite) plus newborn due August (so forthcoming weaning next year) plus until August two three year olds plus some constantly hungry pre-teen mindees!

Franny - I understand what you are saying, I do a lot of homecooking as it is. My main problem is lack of freezer - we have two shelfs above the fridge and no room for a big freezer or chest one. This is such a huge issue - dh seems to resent them thinking we'll end up with chicken nuggets and chips most nights, which I keep telling him we won't but at the end of the day we don't have the room. Plus if anyone's seen my electricity bill thread, I doubt I can afford another appliance!

lunavix Mon 15-May-06 22:04:18

tallmummy - they deliver in our area! I'm quite excited!

How much do you get for your money? Particularly how many pieces of fruit are in the fruit box?

kayzed Mon 15-May-06 22:08:06

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lunavix Mon 15-May-06 22:12:54

It's nuts isn't it.. I think instead of giving people benefits they should give them organic food.. god knows it's worth it's weight in gold.

I've always thought it but I know we'd struggle cost-wise. Maybe it's time for us to all lose a few pounds! Will need to talk dh into at least a bigger fridge, we actually have nowhere for leftovers so we throw away a lot.

Dh is downstairs sighing.. all I've talked about today is eglu's, organic food and compost bins! Lol!

kayzed Mon 15-May-06 22:24:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

hulababy Mon 15-May-06 22:25:35

Gingerbear - which one is that?

I get my first boxes tomorrow from here . I have ordered a medium veg box and a salad module. Quite excited about it. LOL!

Gingerbear Mon 15-May-06 23:48:27

organic pantry

Daisymae Tue 16-May-06 00:00:04

I get a box from Riverford which is really nice and good value for money. As a vegetarian I like to have peppers, courgettes etc so do buy them from local market. There's a stall that grows most of their produce so in the summer it's mostly local grown salads.
Slightly off the point, DD training as BF consultant and the session on nutrition was delivered by woman who advocated buying ONLy Sainsburys' organic food for weaning; this in a area where a lot of people are on limited incomes. And we wonder why women are put off cooking from scratch. Surely it's better to use fresh veg from any shop, maybe local greengrocer even. Then as organic comes down in price start buying what you can afford.

rosycheek Tue 16-May-06 12:51:33

We use these . Are very good quality and a large UK wide box comfortably provides enough for a family of 5. Best thing is you don't get the same boring things week after week.

MissChief Tue 16-May-06 12:53:49

oh if you'tr in London area, organic delivery are the best, IMO! still miss them since moved out - abel & cole not nearly as friendly somehow

hulababy Tue 16-May-06 18:04:56

I recieved my first bag today. I had ordered a salad module but saldy that wasn't available for some reason, but I have had my money credited back to me.

I ordered a Standard Organic Vegetable Bag 2-4 people @ £10.55 and recieved:

225g radishes (18)
225g cherry tomatoes (17)
425g courgettes (3)
500g carrots (5)
280g onions (2)
400g spring greens
720g red cabbage
1kg40g red potatoes (7)
300g green beans

I also ordered Organic (chestnut) Mushrooms 225g @ £1.35

Was a little disppointed not to get my salad module, but ont he whole I am impressed with what we have, the selection and the quality looks better thanSainsburys so far.

tallmummy Tue 16-May-06 20:37:18

Lunavix - got my Riverford box today. The fruit box contains bunch of bananas, 5 apples , 5 pears 5 oranges and two grapefuit. It's almost enough for the week. We used to get 2 fruit boxes but that was too much. It's good quality.

lunavix Tue 16-May-06 23:02:37

Hmm maybe it's not enough then.

We go through - a bag of kids sized apples, 5 red apples, and 5 green apples, a bunch of bananas (around 10 maybe) two punnets of strawberries, a big bag of grapes, and two bags of satsumas a week. If we aren't being decadent!

Veg wise it's smaller - for example this week, we've got a bag of baking potatoes, 4 onions, two red peppers, one yellow pepper, two courgettes, three carrots, a punnet of mushrooms, celery, two packets cherry toms, two baby gem lettuces (only needed one though) a (stick?) of cucumber, a lemon, a cooking apple... I know it's a big specific (and some of that is fruit) but I cook to a meal plan atm. I'm happy to change that but I don't want to drastically cut our fruit intake too.


azroc Wed 17-May-06 17:34:37

We use Riverford for fruit and veg and they are FAB. For almost everything else we have started to use a new fair trade ethical mostly organic supermarket in Melksham, Wiltshire called Who Cares . Anybody local please go along and support them - they have a great selection of products at very good prices, plus a play area for young children. A very friendly and worthwhile shop!

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