From The Straits Times    |

Image: Cover Media

While we’d all like to eat organic food, which usually contain fewer chemicals and growth hormones, many of us are put off by the fact it costs a lot more. This is because organic farms are often a lot smaller and generally take more time to produce their crops, but with the rising cost of living, a lot of people unfortunately have to put their budget above their desire to have higher quality ingredients.

However there are a number of ways you can incorporate organic crops into your weekly food shop. Just follow these top tips from Mind Body Green.

1. Stay in season
It stands to reason that products that are in season cost less than trying to get them at a time when they are not naturally harvested. So vary your diet by including organic vegetables that are readily available at the time. For instance, tomatoes are cheaper in warmer months than in winter. They will taste better that way too.

2. Add affordable ingredients
If your organic foods do cost a little more, balance things out by making meals that combine them with affordable ingredients such as eggs and beans. A cassoulet is a great example, and can be portioned off and frozen to make it go further.

3. Bulk buy
When it comes to organic grains like rice, lentils and beans, you can save money by buying them in larger quantities.

4. Plan your meals
At the same time, there’s no point buying in bulk if you have no intention of using your purchases regularly. Overall, you will waste your precious pennies. So make sure to plan your meals, work out where you would like to incorporate organic ingredients, and then buy what is required. Then just stick to the plan; organised and cost-effective.

5. Avoid pre-portioned foods
Pre-packed foods are convenient yes, but you pay the price. It may take a little more time, but by buying a whole chicken rather than a pack of thighs or breasts for example, you can make your money and meals go further. An organic chicken can be taken and portioned up by your own fair hand; then you can use the bones to make a tasty stock for your other dishes. — Cover Media

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