Five Ways To Go Organic
Posted on September 13 2018
Going organic can be intimidating and expensive – we understand. That’s why we’ve pulled together a list of our favourite ways to go organic for beginners to help you switch to an organic lifestyle step by step. You don’t have to do everything on this list, it’s about choosing ways that suit you to help you get started, then you can make more changes as you go. This is a guide for everyone, whether you need to go organic on a budget or you already eat organic but want to take the lifestyle a bit further. We even asked our ambassador, yoga teacher and actor Matt Penman, to share some of his own experiences and advice!
Ditch the Dirty Dozen
This is one of the best ways to start eating organic if you’re on a budget. It can be expensive to always buy organic food, so we suggest focusing on those foods that are contaminated with pesticides and chemicals the most; dubbed as the ‘dirty dozen’. The 2018 list includes strawberries, spinach, nectarines, apples, grapes, peaches, cherries, pears, tomatoes, celery, potatoes and sweet bell peppers; whereas the ‘clean fifteen’ – those with the fewest pesticides – feature avocados, sweet corn, pineapples, cabbages, onions, frozen sweet peas, papayas, asparagus, mangoes, eggplants, honeydews, kiwis, cantaloupes, cauliflower and broccoli.
Go Local or Go Online
Whilst buying organic is possible in supermarkets, and even the more budget friendly supermarkets are introducing organic ranges (be sure to check with your store), it can be cheaper or at least more enjoyable to go to a local farmer’s market or grocery store. Bulk and organic stores are popping up across the globe, and they often allow you to buy in bulk or weigh out what you need when you need it, avoiding waste and often making your purchase more affordable. If you don’t have a farmer’s market or organic grocery store near you, try going online. There are quite a number of organic bulk stores online, mainly for dried goods like oats, legumes and pastas, but some do fruit and veg too!
“We shop for veg at our local farmers market in Queen’s Park, it’s great! Small-scale farmers and suppliers flock to a school playground every Sunday and sell their delicious fruit and veg, as well as other things. There’s baked goods, second hand clothing, homemade toiletries etc.! It’s nice vibe and allows us to support organic, ethical farm produce.
"Additionally, you can’t get much more local than your own homegrown produce. If you have an outdoor space, start growing some fruits and vegetables of your own! If you get serious, put your name on a list for an allotment - I used to have one and I loved it for two years, until I moved too far away from it. (Be warned, in London the wait list can be years... but there’s no harm in signing up).”
Box It Up
If you’re wanting to start with your veggies and fruit first, and you like the idea of going local but can’t find anything near you, there’s now lots of organic box companies to try. You get to choose from a range of seasonal and even themed veg boxes or pick your own selection, the boxes arrive at your door and you can get cooking. Most of these veg and fruit boxes are relatively local to you, so your supporting your community and the produce comes delivered without plastic and unnecessary packaging. That’s a big yes from us!
“We used to have Abel and Cole, before we found this farmers market, which was great as it sent you produce that was in season and at its best. Also they really inspire you to try new recipes and ideas!”
Sort Your Skincare
Maybe you already eat organic, or perhaps you’ve run out of some of your favourite toiletries and you’re about to stock up. Could you consider swapping your regular cosmetics for organic skincare and hair care products which are good for your body and the planet? It can be costly to change everything over in one go, so we suggest changing your collection over time. If you’re looking to go organic on a budget, we recommend trying online discount stores such as Dolphin Fitness, or starting with more affordable products. Whatever your budget, we’re big fans of Nini Organics, Skin & Tonic, S.W. Basics and Green People. Tip: Instead of forking out for a body moisturiser, try coconut oil!
Turn Your Wardrobe Organic
This may take more investment and time, and it’s important to see it as that – an investment. We live in an age of throwaway fashion and trends that make us feel worthless if we’re not keeping up with them. At STARSEEDS, we focus on creating clothes that last, so you can invest in pieces that live way beyond the latest season. We like to use organic cotton because the pesticides used in regular cotton are damaging to not only are bodies but the planet too (seriously, cotton farmers have high rates of cancer, asthma and other diseases). Whilst eco-friendly fabrics are much easier to come buy, organic ones aren’t so much yet – so organic cotton can be a more accessible place to begin. Whether that’s your t-shirts, underwear or your bed linen, there’s plenty of ways to get started.
“Having your own style is important and whilst we are in this transitionary time you may not find what you want is available in organic cotton or other eco friendly fabrics. Don’t feel the guilt, just start to buy less... invest more in better quality garments that will last ages. Buy from independent designers or shops, invest less in the fast fashion big boys. Try vintage or charity shops for more interesting pieces! Be creative.”