Why so expensive? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 06-08-2008, 10:13 AM
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I am new to the whole vegetarian lifestyle. And have noticed that fruits and veggies are expensive, and more so are the organic ones!! Why do they make it difficult for those of us who are not made of money to eat healthy. Its almost like they want us to eat that crap, and be unhealthy.
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#2 Old 06-08-2008, 11:10 AM
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Fruits and vegetables like apples, bananas, cabbages, lettuce, spinach, potatoes, carrots, onions, and dark leafy greens seem to be cheap all year around. Then there are frozen vegetables which last a while in your freezer. I always shop at Chinese and Mexican markets to pick up things like fruits, vegetables, and soy products. They always offer much more variety and better prices than your typical American markets like Vons and Albertsons. I think I spend roughly 80 to 90 bucks a month feeding myself with lots of leftover.
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#3 Old 06-08-2008, 11:14 AM
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Meat is subsidized, fruits and vegetables aren't so much.
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#4 Old 06-08-2008, 11:56 AM
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Wow, our food bill is through the roof most months. When we go into the store, we come out with about $50-$60 in food and that lasts us a little more than a week and a half. And thats when we are only eating vegetarian. When we try and go vegan it gets a bit more expensive since I like a lot of soy.
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#5 Old 06-08-2008, 12:23 PM
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i spend about $75/week for a vegan family of four--and mostly organic. you just have to buy in bulk/on sale and cook from scratch!
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#6 Old 06-12-2008, 07:43 PM
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I live in a little town in Nova Scotia Canada, and I just handed over $122.00 for one week worth of food, and believe me, I don't shop extravagantly and I don't buy meat for anyone. And that is enough for my husband and I. I did buy a couple of double boxes of cereal for my husband and a couple containers of yogurt for him, but that is pretty much it for buying over the top. Sounds like it is more expensive north of the border.
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#7 Old 06-13-2008, 09:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smedley View Post

i spend about $75/week for a vegan family of four--and mostly organic. you just have to buy in bulk/on sale and cook from scratch!



Smedley, I have to admit, that IS impressive!!

I would love to find out what a typical weeks menu looks like for your family?

If you wouldn't mind sharing it with us?





K3llyFr4ley, I agree, it does seem the healthier lifestyle seems to be a bit more expensive.

Obviously in the summertime, IF you have a farmer's market close by, you can find alot of your fruits and veggies for a good price.

Really, even if you don't have a FM, most things that are in season you can get them at a decent price, even at the grocery store.

But out of season, I don't think you can beat frozen veggies.



Beans, are another very cheap alternative to alot of the mock meats.

They are even more inexpensive if you cook them at home.

Rice is fairly inexpensive, depending on where you shop.



Nuts, & seeds can't be beat, buying them in bulk. You can actually freeze alot of them to keep them fresher for a longer period of time.



I will admit that we could eat a bit more of a basic menu and not spend as much.

But in the summertime, nothing beats a fresh watermelon or some ripe tomatoes from someone's garden.



Something that helps me tremendously, is whenever I do cook, make at least enough for two meals.

Eat one now, and either refridgerate or freeze the other one for later. This also helps in conserving electricity.



I know alot of people will buy their grains in bulk, if you have a decent health food, or whole foods store close by. They are almost always cheaper this way, than buying it prepackaged.



OH & if you find a great price on something you eat alot of, buy extras and put them up in the freezer (if you have the room) for later on in the year, when they go up in price.



For the most part though, I think everyone is feeling the price increases.

But trust me, I buy meat for the rest of my household and veggie and fruit prices, are just as cheap, than about any cut of meat.





Michelle
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#8 Old 06-13-2008, 01:25 PM
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we usually eat oatmeal sweetened with pureed fruit and raisins and i blend a nut butter with the fruit, or a fruit sweetened quick bread and spread a mix of a nut butter, fruit and flaxseed meal. once in a while i up the excitement for the kids and let them have boxed cereal--but not often as it costs more. you should see the excitement for boxed high fiber no sugar sticks!! add raisins and a banana and you have a very exciting meal.



they drink soymilk, once in a great while pop or juice.



lunches and dinners i offer 2 vegetables and a grain--whole wheat pasta, millet, amaranth, quinoa, couscous, wild rice, brown rice, whole wheat tortillas etc. i have to buy fruit, but in the summer i get fresh produce from the csa i belong to, so we eat what we get and i dont have to spend much. in the winter i just get a jar of something that i canned over the summer (over 200 quart jars last year)--all sorts of different soups, stews and jars of stuff to make different kinds of patties.

i cook a LOT. i make homemade dressings for grains and greens and often use a smooth soup i have canned for saucing things. it takes time but it saves a heck of a lot and is far healthier!
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#9 Old 06-15-2008, 11:17 AM
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Thanks Smedley for sharing!

So you just keep it pretty basic, there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.



I know exactly what you mean about the cereal. I have two teenagers and they can go through an entire box in a day if I buy it.



I know my kids really like muffins for breakfast as well.

Oatmeal is one of my all time favorite breakfast foods, but of coures no one else in the house will touch it.



Canning..............ah yes, that *can* (pun intended) save a whole, whole lot in the grocery budget.



We just moved back to Tennessee this winter and I am also planning on putting out a garden next year.

I can't wait to start having some of my own food stored up for the next year.

Gosh it's alot of work but it's sooo, sooo worth it, in the end.



Just a curious question here, when you mention the 2 veggies and a grain, does your protein come from the grain? I know that quinoa is supposed to be some type of "super food" that includes alot of the aminos and such.

I guess I just didn't realize that grains had that much protein in them?



I'm not one of those fanatic "where am I gonna get my protein" type people, 'cause even some veggies have some, but since you didn't mention any type of beans, peas, lentils, etc. I just assumed you get it from the grains part of the equation?



Also I'm wondering if you buy your grains in bulk?

Unfortunately I don't have a health food type store anywhere near me, but ordering offline would defiantely be a possibility.



Thanks again for your response!



Michelle
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#10 Old 06-15-2008, 11:48 AM
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there is always some sort of protein either mixed in the grain, or from the grain itself like quinoa. there is also protein mixed in with the veggies, beans, lentils nuts etc. we rarely eat just plain veggies. and of course there is protein in soymilk and a small amount in the veggies like you said. i have never been one of "those" (snickers) people that obsess about protein either--people usually get wayyy too much of it and i know a lot about nutrition and our diet is very very well balanced.

i do buy my grains in bulk mostly at whole foods, some at www.bulkfoods.com. which reminds me, i get gluten flour from there in large many lb (cant remember size) bags which i use to make seitan, which is high protein. check that site out and get cookin!

i am excited as i get my first csa pickup tuesday!!
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#11 Old 06-15-2008, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smedley View Post

i spend about $75/week for a vegan family of four--and mostly organic. you just have to buy in bulk/on sale and cook from scratch!



Quote:
Originally Posted by flvegnewbie View Post

Smedley, I have to admit, that IS impressive!!



I spend about what Smedley does, (especially with gas prices lately) I try very hard to keep my weekly bill under the magic number 65$ but it varies from week to week.

I have two teens and an eight-year-old eating-growing machine so I know you have to be creative and really watch for sales/buy in bulk/stick to the basics.



My kids don't drink soymilk or any milks, (never cared for it) just water, and I think that saves me a fair bit right there. We grow a small garden, and get a little summer produce from my parents. I also buy beans, lentils and rice in 25# bags from the co-op - SUPER cheap and they last us almost a year.
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#12 Old 06-15-2008, 06:39 PM
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I spend about what Smedley does, (especially with gas prices lately) I try very hard to keep my weekly bill under the magic number 65$ but it varies from week to week.

I have two teens and an eight-year-old eating-growing machine so I know you have to be creative and really watch for sales/buy in bulk/stick to the basics.



My kids don't drink soymilk or any milks, (never cared for it) just water, and I think that saves me a fair bit right there. We grow a small garden, and get a little summer produce from my parents. I also buy beans, lentils and rice in 25# bags from the co-op - SUPER cheap and they last us almost a year.





i am sure those teen mouths INHALE stuff! gotta love em! i need to look into buying bags of beans in that large quantity. soymilk is a hefty chunk and we should cut back for that reason. we get it for $4 a gallon from costco and cheaper when we use better than milks soymilk powder. i use the powder a lot in warmer months as i blend it with a variety of frozen fruit with a bit of water for and easy smoothie for the kids. the powder, we like when it is blended, but settles easily. so, it is better for blended drinks.

do you give your kids vitamins TNS, or are just hoping they dont die from the lack of vitamins that enriched soymilk would give them?lol
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#13 Old 06-15-2008, 10:26 PM
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Heehee, my kids do take vitamins when they remember, and we do use enriched soymilk in cooking a fair bit. I should add my kids aren't 100% vegan - they do eat lacto-ovo at school and when out with friends, so I'm not as worried about B12 and such.
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#14 Old 06-16-2008, 10:30 AM
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see if the landlord will pay for some of it

I'm singin' here to get rid of fear
Hope it disappears right here with the rain
But I know life is pain, not like a fairytale
Meaningless to pray, so just goin' on my way
~Miyavi "Torture"
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#15 Old 06-16-2008, 06:57 PM
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Heehee, my kids do take vitamins when they remember, and we do use enriched soymilk in cooking a fair bit. I should add my kids aren't 100% vegan - they do eat lacto-ovo at school and when out with friends, so I'm not as worried about B12 and such.



my kids take them when i remember to remind them, and given that, in life i have nothing else to think about aside from a childs multivitamin, i certainly rarely forget!!! NOT! i know your kids arent vegan-you do an awesome job! they look happy, just like YOU
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#16 Old 06-16-2008, 11:56 PM
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... given that, in life i have nothing else to think about aside from a childs multivitamin, i certainly rarely forget!!!

You are my hero!!
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#17 Old 06-17-2008, 08:47 AM
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Originally Posted by smedley View Post

there is always some sort of protein either mixed in the grain, or from the grain itself like quinoa. there is also protein mixed in with the veggies, beans, lentils nuts etc. we rarely eat just plain veggies. and of course there is protein in soymilk and a small amount in the veggies like you said. i have never been one of "those" (snickers) people that obsess about protein either--people usually get wayyy too much of it and i know a lot about nutrition and our diet is very very well balanced.

i do buy my grains in bulk mostly at whole foods, some at www.bulkfoods.com. which reminds me, i get gluten flour from there in large many lb (cant remember size) bags which i use to make seitan, which is high protein. check that site out and get cookin!

i am excited as i get my first csa pickup tuesday!!

Great tips! I do a lot of that as well. The flooding in the midwest is not going to help prices at all either I've been trying to just stick with whatever is cheap right now, meaning in season and grown pretty close by. I recently started doing a CSA thing too which has kept it at least somewhat manageable.
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#18 Old 06-17-2008, 02:37 PM
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Originally Posted by sarahjayn1980 View Post

i just moved in with a friend who owns a house. she's a landlord only in the technical sense. i know she doesn't have the money.





oh right. bummer

I'm singin' here to get rid of fear
Hope it disappears right here with the rain
But I know life is pain, not like a fairytale
Meaningless to pray, so just goin' on my way
~Miyavi "Torture"
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#19 Old 06-19-2008, 05:49 AM
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You people in the States have really low food prices compared to Canada. There is no way I could feed four people even two meals a day for $75.00 and organic to boot. It just wouldn't happen. Which is so weird because our dollar is worth pretty much the same as yours now.
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#20 Old 06-23-2008, 08:14 PM
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My grocery bill actually went down when i went vegan, since I stopped buying meat and so much processed food.

And a happy girl was I!
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#21 Old 06-23-2008, 08:59 PM
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You are my hero!!



well, thats great! glad i am someones hero!!! more people in life should think that way!!!
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#22 Old 06-23-2008, 09:50 PM
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My food bill actually went down. Until last year I got most of my produce from local farmers markets around town. I recently joined a CSA it is $300 dollars a year but I get pounds usually around 7 (a lot of times more ) of produce weekly and I always have extras to freeze or give to neighbors. Definately worth it when you consider how much they charge in the supermarkets. It might be easier for me though since I live in a college city.
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#23 Old 06-25-2008, 06:39 PM
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TNS, $65.00 a week? THAT is impressive!



I know what you mean with having 2 teens. Seriously, did we eat like that we when we young? Good gosh, no wonder my parents constantely talked about the grocery bill!



Unfortunately for me, I'm the only veg. in a household of 4, so that of course ups our grocery budget considerably. Although I try really hard to cook veg. 3-4 nights a week.



The bulk thing is defiantely the way to go, but I think just for me it would just take waaaay too long to eat up 25 lbs. of whatever.

I dunno though, I lurve certain beans and such, so it could save some money in the end?



A garden is definately in my future now that I have a nice open place to put one out.

I'm totally looking forward to next Spring!



I think it's awesome how much you all can shop with.

You give me such inspiration!





Michelle
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