5 ways to source cheaper 5+ a day
Don't have a vege garden? Here are 5 other ways to save money on fruit and veges.
The price of fruit and vegetables has been rising steadily. Unfortunately, not all of us have the budget to buy fresh produce or have a luscious garden in which to grow our own. But here are 5 other ways you can save money and still get your fruit and veges.
1. Join your local fruit and vege co-op.
Some community groups source produce from local suppliers and sell them a lot cheaper than you’d get at the supermarket. Food Together is a website with some information on co-ops in Aotearoa, or you could start by searching ‘fruit and vege co-op near me’ to find a local programme.
2. Buy frozen or canned.
Frozen and canned produce are just as good for you as fresh. Frozen/canned produce generally maintains nutrition levels because they are usually packaged soon after harvesting. They are often cheaper, plus they last way longer and allow you to eat your favourite produce out of season.
When you’re buying canned, check there’s no added sugar or salt.
3. Buy rejected, ‘imperfect’ produce.
An alarming amount of edible produce is wasted because it doesn’t look good enough for supermarket shelves. Online initiatives such as Perfectly Imperfect, Misfit Garden or Wonky Box are combatting this issue by selling reject veges at affordable prices*. Countdown has also introduced The Odd Bunch range with the same idea: funny-looking produce for less.
*Not available for all regions – visit their websites for more details.
4. Buy at your local farmers’ market or greengrocer.
Often these have lower prices than supermarkets, as they focus on what’s in season and locally available. As a bonus, you’ll be supporting agriculture and small businesses in your community. To see what’s accessible, try searching ‘farmers’ market near me’ or ‘greengrocer near me’. Click here (https://www.consumer.org.nz/articles/saving-money-on-produce) for information on when your favourite veges are in season.
5. It’s all about community.
Alongside fruit and vege co-ops, community spirit can come to the rescue. You may have access to a community garden in which you can care for a plot and grow produce, even if you live in an apartment or rental. Or ask around your community on public boards or Facebook groups to find out whether gardeners have excess produce that might otherwise go to waste.
Bonus tip: Consumer NZ has your back with some tips on making your produce go the extra mile once it’s home. This is a great way to reduce waste and ensure you don’t throw your money away.