Savvy Shoppper goes Organic
We are all finding ways to cut corners, no matter what our income these days. Some items (double lattes or lunches out) are easier to drop back on, and some make sense to hold onto (family outings or healthy foods). Sure fast food can be cheap, but healthy eating can be affordable too. Here are some tips from the bargainist.com to help us afford the wholesome organic foods are worth budgeting for:
Hit the Farmers’ Market - Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti both have wonderful Farmer’s Markets. There arealso many other small markets around the city; Coleman’s in Ypsilanti and Alexander’s in Whitmore Lake are both just off of US-23, and worth stopping at. Jenny’s Farm Market in Dexter is also a great find.
There are lots of deals to be had on fresh fruit, vegetables and more. Plus it’s often organically grown. It will likely be cheaper because the farmers selling it have less overhead costs. Don’t be afraid to bargain with them—especially if you’re buying in bulk.
Get Coupons - Yes, coupons for organic items do exist. Sign up for Whole Foods' “The Whole Deal” e-newsletter. It’s often packed with coupons and money-saving tips. Mambo Sprouts is another great source for organic coupons for items ranging from cleaning products to soft-baked cookies.
Grow Some of Your Own - Vegetable patches don’t require much space. Section off a sunny, unused spot in your backyard and grow your own organic bounty. You’ll know it’s safe—and free—to eat.
Stick with the Season - Fruits and veggies that are in season are always cheaper. This goes for organic, too. Pick recipes that include ingredients that are being harvested now and you’ll spend far less. Epicurious.com lists September in Michigan to be peak season for apples, pears, watermelon, broccoli, cabbage, corn, eggplant, peppers, raspberries, and tomatoes.
Visit Brand Websites - Sometimes you can find exclusive coupons on the websites of your favorite organic brands. Visit those sites before heading to the grocery store. Some to check out are Stonyfield Farm, Organic Valley, and Kashi. These can be used at your favorite grocery stores, Plum Market, Kroger, Busch’s, Hiller, etc.
Communicate with Others - There are plenty of people out there interested in eating organic and doing it cheaply. Check out the forums at OrganicGroceryDeals.com to see where the best coupons and bargains are on organic items. Also, the local yahoo group annarborfood, is something anyone can request to join and get updates on recipes, foods, and savings.
So there you have it, tips for finding healthy foods without busting your budget -- tailored to fit the Ann Arbor organic shopper.
Retail Blogger Angie Smith will hunt for deals and dish on the latest in retail in Ann Arbor. Readers will attain notices of great deals, and store happenings in and around the city. To report a news item or tip contact her at email@example.com