Friday, May 11, 2012

Local and Organic Challenge: My May Food Coop Order

It feels like Christmas comes several times a year for me - every time a new coop order arrives (once every 2-3 months) I am a bit like a kid in a candy store. I guess in this case that would be an organic, fair trade candy store :) Our latest order arrived yesterday, so it's time for another update on my local and organic challenge.

I managed to haul this rather large volume of food home in two bike trailer loads. Fortunately the order coordinator (where the group order gets delivered and sorted) lives in my neighbourhood so it's only a few minutes' ride to my place.

Here's the booty this time round:

Back row:
1 litre Soleil d'Or organic, cold pressed canola oil (Canadian produced) $12.87
1 kg Dutchman's Gold unpasteurized honey (locally produced) $8.20
1 kg Oak Manor organic pumpkin seeds (Ontario produced) $10.31
1 kg Oak Manor organic sunflower seeds (Ontario produced) $5.62
1 kg Oak Manor organic millet (Ontario produced) $4.05
1 kg Oak Manor organic popcorn (Ontario produced) $5.95

Middle row:
1 kg Oak Manor organic quinoa (Ontario produced) $7.62
425 g Nature's Path organic flaxseed meal $5.58
1 kg Camino fair trade organic cane sugar $5.89

Front row:
11.34 kg organic unsweetened shredded coconut $89.18
5.5 kg organic navy beans $17.51
1 case (12 x 400 mL cans) Thai Kitchen organic coconut milk $22.22
12 kg Oak Manor organic cornmeal $28.48

For those just joining me on my "local and organic challenge" adventure, you may rightly be wondering what on earth someone with a food budget of $400 a month (for a family of four) is doing spending just shy of 90 bucks on coconut. Well, last time I bought an insane amount of raisins and oats, and next time I'll buy a crazy amount of something else. Buying in such large quantities allows me to get a fantastic price per pound and makes it much easier to afford the purchase of organic foods (in some cases I'm getting prices at or below grocery store prices for conventionally grown foods). I expect that the coconut will last at least a year, even in this household where we're all a little coconut addicted. The 12 kilograms of cornmeal may last us that long as well (although we do eat a lot of cornbread and all have a fondness for my Lemon Blueberry Polenta Cake!). I'll be portioning and packaging the coconut, cornmeal, and beans for storage in the freezer.

This time round, everything in my order is organic and all of the grains and seeds (except for the flax) are produced in Ontario. The honey is from a local Hamilton-area producer.

Grand total for this order: $223.48

I think we've made some great progress overall with this local and organic challenge considering we are less than 3 months in! And I hope I am going to have some more exciting news on this topic very soon (I just need to iron out the details on another great local food lead I've gotten), so stay tuned for further updates.

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