Anyone gone from organic to conventional - Mothering Forums

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Old 06-28-2009, 03:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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for groceries and how much money did you save? Just curious.
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Old 06-28-2009, 09:13 PM
 
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I use to buy pretty much 100% organic, but as of late it's only a few items (dairy, some veggies, some fruits).

I am saving money because i'm getting out of debt faster. Once i'm out of debt and have a good chunk of my emergency fund fully funded I'll switch back.

me, dh and 2 boys = our family (oh and a cat...who is also a male...lol)
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Old 06-28-2009, 09:21 PM
 
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I have cut back on fresh fruits and veggies but have not purchased conventional. Just buying in moderation more.
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Old 06-28-2009, 11:33 PM
 
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I used to buy almost all my produce organic in the summer months. Now I hardly buy anything certified organic. I mostly buy fresh produce from local farmers who are striving toward more organic farming methods. It saves me lots of money.
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Old 06-29-2009, 07:40 PM
 
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I usually buy 90% organic (regular cheese and chicken because they are extremely expensive here). I tried going non organic for one month hoping to save some money but I didn't see a difference in our grocery bill. Organic produce is only 20 cents a pound more here so the money saved wasn't enough to notice. I went back to buying organic and just hoping to get as much as I can while on sale.

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Old 06-29-2009, 10:18 PM
 
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I think it really depends on where you live and what you are paying. By shopping carefully and paying attention to price, I can usually get prices equal to regular grocery store conventional pricing. We buy a lot at the farmer's market and also animal shares but we live in LA-- it isn't like I am getting cheapo farm stand pricing.

But we buy very little processed food and my sister's cosco processed "dinosaur" chicken lunches for her kids are cheaper than my organic mostly vegetarian and what I can afford pastured meat diet is going to be. We get some decent deals at TJs and even Whole Foods is within our budget if I pay attention, but it will never be as cheap as that (junk) she buys. But then, I don't even think that is food....
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Old 06-30-2009, 02:46 AM
 
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I went from about 40% organic to maybe 10% during the last year. I really noticed a $$ savings but I can't tell you the numbers. It was like I suddenly could afford a lot more variety of food whereas before I was very limited. (FWIW, we didn't have a good selection of organic foods until very recently.)

As an example, a 4L jug of organic milk (similiar to a gallon for the US folks) was around $10. The same in "regular" milk is $4.39. We go through 2 jugs a week. Bananas are 78cents a lb. vs $1.20/lb for organic. Organic cheddar cheese is $5.99/roughly a quarter pound. "Regular" cheddar is around $10 for roughly 1.5lbs.

I try to buy more local stuff rather than organic as most of our organic stuff comes from California. I'd rather eat spinach that was picked 2 days ago locally rather than spinach that was packaged 2 weeks ago, yk?

Mama to Emma (7) and Sarah (5)

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Old 06-30-2009, 03:37 AM
 
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Originally Posted by JudiAU View Post
I think it really depends on where you live and what you are paying. By shopping carefully and paying attention to price, I can usually get prices equal to regular grocery store conventional pricing. We buy a lot at the farmer's market and also animal shares but we live in LA-- it isn't like I am getting cheapo farm stand pricing.
It definitely varies by area. I'm guessing in LA you have lots of options. In a town of 35K with brutal winters, the options aren't as numerous. Now the general COL, yeah, you probably aren't so thrilled.

I sometimes attempt organic, but really, if I'm comfortable with my growers (who I tend to ask lots of questions to!), and there's minimal spraying or they use something I've been thinking of (I have awful codling moth/apple maggot issues, awful) and they feed their goods to their own family, I call it good. Local is still better than organic trucked in from Chile, at least to me.

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Old 06-30-2009, 04:10 AM
 
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I think it depends where you are buying organic food. Around here, organic food in season can be a good deal. We do a CSA (subscription to a farm) so we get lots and lots of organic produce all summer and fall for about $40 a week.

If we were to buy organic at a big grocery store (like safeway), it would be much more expensive than at the local grocery co-op.

We try to spend more for organics when it really matters. For our family this means organic beef, wild salmon and organic milk/yogurt, along with the "dirty dozen" produce. We'll buy conventional other things.
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Old 06-30-2009, 03:23 PM
 
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It's been awhile since I switched back but I saved $200-$250 when I switched from organics back to conventional. That is 2 weeks worth of groceries right there!!

Kelly,newly single mom of four wonderful children.

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Old 06-30-2009, 06:25 PM
 
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I used to buy about 90%+ organics and now I really don't buy ANY, unless they are cheaper, which occasionally happens.

I don't recall how much exactly it saves me, but it's a good deal. I would love to one day go back to buying organic and local foods...but right now it's just not in the budget ($130/2 weeks for 2 adults, 1 5yo and a baby on the way).

I don't feel too guilty anymore though...honestly, i just hide my head in the sand and ignore the conventional nay-sayers...no reason to feel guilty about something i just cannot do financially right now.

That being said, I do feed my family very healthfully, despite it not being organic. We eat mostly vegan, whole foods, lots of fruit, hardly any processed junk, etc.
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Old 07-07-2009, 09:11 PM
 
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I used to buy about 90%+ organics and now I really don't buy ANY, unless they are cheaper, which occasionally happens.

I don't recall how much exactly it saves me, but it's a good deal. I would love to one day go back to buying organic and local foods...but right now it's just not in the budget ($130/2 weeks for 2 adults, 1 5yo and a baby on the way).

I don't feel too guilty anymore though...honestly, i just hide my head in the sand and ignore the conventional nay-sayers...no reason to feel guilty about something i just cannot do financially right now.

That being said, I do feed my family very healthfully, despite it not being organic. We eat mostly vegan, whole foods, lots of fruit, hardly any processed junk, etc.
This is us almost exactly, and ITA.

Our ped made an interesting point to me that a lot of people are into buying organic, but that the quality of the food may or may not actually be superior to conventional foods. Highly processed organic food is still probably worse for you than local, in season, well washed fruits, veggies & grains.

I may not be able to afford organic canned tomatoes right now, but I read the labels on the non-organic stuff and find a brand that doesn't have HFCS, minimal preservatives, dyes, salt, etc.

So, while in an ideal world I'd buy all organic, for the time being I'm settling for minimally processed, well washed, no HFCS, MSG, preservatives, and dyes. Oh, and locally grown and in season as much as possible.

Good luck!
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