Showing posts with label Affordable fair trade. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Affordable fair trade. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Shopping Report/Finding Organic Labels

Finding Organic Foods
Considering frugal Organic Shopping Report
In keeping with our New Year's Resolution to find more organic labels and Non-Gmo products my daughter and I set out on a week long shopping trip to see just what was available in our area and how easy it is to find meat, produce and products.

We began our trip by making a list of foods that were most important to us. Our list included organic popcorn, since we love popcorn and corn is a very high risk product. My daughter has also been on a search for organic meat filled canned ravioli. While Annie's Homegrown does have a very good ravioli product, it hasn't quite satisfied the ravioli taste buds in our house. This is what we found.

At the end of my report you will find a chart listing my findings. Grades were based on products available, prices, shop ability (could I make one stop and find everything  I need?), and taste (I have to feed a tough crowd, lets face it, I am the only one in the house really committed to this cause).

We began our shopping @ Safeway since they introduced their own organic store brand, "O", line of organics. I expected to pay a little more but also find a little more. I was surprised by the lack of organic and Non-Gmo labels. When I asked about the "O" line of meat the butcher told me that he could order it but that it was just way too expensive in his opinion. Overall I gave Safeway a grade of C+ for their efforts.

We continued on to Wal-mart. After viewing the movie Food Inc. and noting the efforts of organic vendors to get their products on Walmart shelves, I expected to find more here. While there was a section of frozen prepackaged organics, I still found very little organic and Non-Gmo labeled foods leaving Wal-mart with a overall grade of D+.

Next Stop was Sprout's Farmer's Market where I expected to find organic meat, produce and hoped to find popcorn. I did find Organic popcorn and prepackaged goods like organic enchilada sauce that tasted great. In regards to meat, Sprout's brand was simply labeled "USDA Choice." I did find one organic chicken for an outrageous $14.99. Ouch! Overall, I will probably shop Sprout's to stock up on some of my dry goods but I couldn't stop and pick up everything I needed. I gave Sprout's a B-.

I was very surprised to find that my normal shopping stop was quite shop able. I would say it is one of the best places to shop. Not only has Fry's Marketplace come out with their own store brand but they have started carrying some national organic labels as well and they put them on sale offering prices competitive to name brand. I found Annie's Homegrown for the same price as Kraft and Chefboyardee. They are also offering a large section of organic produce. I gave Fry's Marketplace a B+.

Trader Joe's received the highest score being very shop able, carrying organic meat and everything imaginable, I gave them an A-. Why the minus? Taste, I just cannot use some of the meats and cheeses without complaints. Some of the dry goods taste "pasty." The breads and produce however are wonderful, very flavorful produce.

Honorable Mentions:

Costco (B) is a warehouse store, but I am finding some organic meats for reasonable prices as well as organic produce, I will probably continue to stock up there. SuperTarget (B+) now carries their own brand as well as competitors brands for competitive prices.Target brand has come under some question so as always make sure the label says organic.

Grade Card

Organic Meats
Organic Produce
Organic Dry/Frozen Goods
Organic Dairy
Organic Store Brand
Organic Store Brand
One Chicken
Very little
Rather Large Section of Produce
Organic Store Brand & several isles of competitors
Not so much
Trader Joe’s
Yes Some
Enough to Stock up

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Finding Non-GMO Labels

Finding Non-Gmo Labels
Finding Non-GMO Labels
Looking for non-gmo (genetically modified organisms) has been overwhelming to say the least. So many of our foods are genetically modified, even fresh produce and whole grains, and previously the only way to spot non-gmo with the naked eye is an organic label. After careful research, I am so pleased to provide you with two additions to looking for the organic labels.

Both Greenpeace and the Non-GMO Project have compiled a comprehensive list of non-gmo brands. Brand listing is so helpful because frankly that is how most of us shop. Think about how bombarded we are with business logos. Both of my children materialized there first steps to reading by the recognition of logos before age 2. Logos are a huge part of our culture.

Greenpeace has made gmo free brand recognition easy with a downloadable color coded list of good, moderatly good and bad brands to look for while you shop. You can also link the list to your facebook account for easy viewing from your smartphone.

There is also a new label in town, The Non-Gmo Project label. This is not only a new label to look for, you can search the website for your favorite brands. The website will tell you what brands have been approved as well as those pending approval. The Non-GMO Project website has also compiled a list of non-gmo wholesalers to watch for when reading labels.

I will be watching for these non-gmo brands when I am shopping today. Watch for my reviews in future blog posts.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Saving with Farmers Markets and Coops

saving with farmers markets
Save with Farmer's Markets and Coops
Many people have had great success purchasing fresh fruits and vegetables from a farmers market or coop. You don’t have to have a large family for a coop to be worth while; if you love fruits and vegetables or want to add more to your diet then a farmers market or coop may be for you.

Purchasing from coops:

• When you purchase from a coop you pay a weekly or biweekly fee and the coop brings you enough fresh fruits and vegetables for that period of time. You will usually be asked to bring a laundry basket to a designated pick up location in your area and the basket is usually stocked with a variety of seasonal produce and it is locally grown to boot. Locally grown produce is fresh and contains more nutrients and requires fewer chemicals. The coop will usually email care and cooking instructions along with tasty recipes shortly after the produce is delivered.

• There are several different types of coops; some specialize in only organics, and some offer meat and dairy. There is even one valley coop that offers a selection of fresh granola and home baked bread. What ever you choose, a coop is usually a good deal, and the vegetables are fresh enough to keep in your refrigerator for a couple of weeks.

Purchasing from farmers markets:
Farmer’s markets are also a great way to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables as well as local food specialties. There is a variety of famer’s markets through out the Phoenix area. Downtown Phoenix Public Market is open Wednesdays and Saturdays; they take all kinds of payment including food stamps. Tolmachoff Farms offers locally grown seasonal produce as well as home canned jams and jellies; they are located at 75th Ave and Bethany Home Road.

12 Best Farmers Markets in America according to Delish...
More Arizona Community Farmer’s Markets….

Even more Arizona Farmer’s Markets….

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Affordable Fair Trade

There are several companies out there that offer fair trade labels without an unfair price tag.  What is fair trade?  In short fair trade means the company is trying to pay the farmers a fair wage and protect the environment while trading.  They also avoid trading with farmers that use child labor.  Fair trade is good for everyone.

Starbucks is a fair trade label but it can be a little expensive.  Try purchasing in bulk at Costco or catching it on sale at the grocery.  Read more about Starbucks by clicking on the link "Understanding the relationship between business and ethics.

Numi is a new brand that offers fair trade tea and chocolate.  Also available at target.

Trader Joe's has been a fair trade retailer for quite a while and they have great prices on spices, chocolate, coffee and tea.

Understanding the relationship between business and ethics...

How I became Considering frugal

Fueled by the growing list of pollution related allergies my family suffered from each day, and inspired by my 97 year old grandmother who could recycle ANYTHING before recycling was cool, back in 2011, I decided (in the spirit of the Julie/Julia Project...) to embark on a journey to see just how much one family could do to change our planet. I didn't consult any other parties before I launched this idea. Thankfully my husband, daughter and son are usually my biggest supporters. Here is the catch; as I'm normally very thrifty (you can note from early blog posts), I was looking for ways that I could reduce our carbon footprint and make socially responsible purchases without increasing our spending. Mmmmmm. We succeed in changing some of our habits a bit and finding ways to reduce our footprint. There were lots of fun epic fails alone the way too! But the biggest change we have made over the course of the last six years, was to move from the mega city of Phoenix to Wyoming. You can read my full bio on my About Me page.

Legal Disclaimer

While it is true that I am working on a PHD in Psychology and very smart and frugal, I am not a medical doctor, criminal, personal or accident lawyer. I do not sell insurance nor am I an accountant or mortgage advisor. While some of my posts may offer good ideas on home, health and business solutions, I am not personally responsible nor is Considering frugal for any advice, ideas, recipes or menu plans that you decide to use. This blog is intended to be helpful and fun. Any products you purchase from my Amazon store or any other retailer advertised on my blog must be returned to them. I may sometimes endorse a product that I love. This is simply my opinion, you must try all products at your own risk. While I personally do not use tracking cookies or share information, my affiliates are third parties and they may do so. Please click, travel and purchase at your own risk.

frugal advice

"...for your Father knows what you need before you ask." Matthew 6:8