Recently, I spent $370 on a one time grocery shopping excursion for my family of four. This amount is a new record and quite frankly I am concerned.
My husband gently reminds me each week it is my insistence on buying mostly organic, unprocessed foods and particularly my focus on organic, grass fed meats that drives the bill up. Also, higher-end condiments without all the junk ingredients can be very pricey. If I need to stock pantry items such as organic coconut sugar and citric acid free tomato sauce in the BPA free carton, these cost significantly more than their cheap, GMO and BPA containing counterparts.
I want to feed my family well but this dilemma has got me seriously flummoxed.
There exists a great divide with food. On the one hand we have organic, non-GMO, grass fed, grass finished, pasture raised real food and on the other we have conventionally grown (pesticide laden), antibiotic and hormone infested, GMO heavy, and preservative addled junk. Food should be food and we should not have to choose a side because we should all be on the same one. This is wishful ranting.
Marketing has gotten out of control as it continuously contorts to the latest trends. For example, during one conversation with my wine guy about organic wines (I am aware that wine is not considered a food), I learned how many countries are already using biodiversity growing practices and do not spray their grapes with pesticides. Conversely, I also learned that the wine industry plays a lot of dirty pool in terms of GMO ingredients, pesticides, and disgusting dyes and fillers in order to make their product more marketable.
Unless you are in the know, how would you know?
In spite of the obstacles, I will soldier on. I realize that there is no easy solution but each of us is responsible to be ever vigilant in our demand for real food and food company transparency. Voting with our dollars is currently our best option to ensure that our demands are met. Loudly expounding on it to whomever is willing to listen isn’t a bad idea either but there is that pesky risk of coming off as a wacko so choose your audience wisely. I have in the past voiced my concerns and desires to supermarket managers but I honestly don’t think they cared all that much if at all. Consumers creating competition by demanding the highest quality food while eschewing the for-profit-only garbage and subsidized by our own so health-conscious government would lower everyone’s food bill and offer the added bonus of better health.,
I continue to frequent farmer’s markets when open, search out farms where we can purchase grass-fed and grass finished meats in larger quantities (an ongoing challenge where I live), buying locally and in season when possible, and buying in bulk whenever feasible. My list is by no means exhaustive and as boring as this ending sounds, I continue to look for new ways within my current geographical locale to get the biggest food bang for my buck.