23 November, 2008

The Quest for Local Food

Yet again, we find our food bill creeping northwards. Ironic, as fuel prices have finally dropped nearer to cheaper oil markets. Still weeks away from any real harvest, and more than a month until we will have our chooks, we again find ourselves struggling to cut back on grocery costs.

One possibility we've been considering for awhile is the purchase of whole or half meat-animals, direct from smaller farms. Ethically, this appeals to my inner hippy, as I'm ever aware of the necessity of a locivorous (see Locavore) diet. Financially, one can't deny the spendthrift lure of discounted bulk products.

Here's the problem: We don't know any farmers!

I did stumble across South Rock Lamb, a Kangaroo Island producers cooperative that delivers (I think) 10 kg cuts of lamb to the Adelaide area once monthly. If the price seems right, we'll be signing on with them for every third month, or so. But, primarily, we prefer beef, fish, and chicken. I'd love to support a local cattle farm, a fish hatchery or fisherman, and certainly would enjoy some free range chicken that isn't corporate-stamped. I just have no idea where to begin.

So, blogaverse, I put the call out. Creep out of your lurky hideyholes and recommend your local farmer, friend, service, or co-op. We'd also be open to dairy producers as well!

Our region is the Fleurieu Peninsula, in South Australia. So, anything from KI, the Riverlands, Adelaide Hills, or Adelaide suburbs would be great. If it's a bit further, we're open to that too—We really just want to cut some cost, and get a bit greener in the cutting.

If you have no suggestions, or are far from our region, how do you keep your grocery bills from skyrocketing in these pricey times?

1 comment:

Maggie ~:) said...

Well, you know I can't give you any local advice for your area, hehe.

What I resorted to here in Dallas was shopping at the 99 cent only store first before i did any other grocery shopping. They always have staples like canned tomatoes and canned chickpeas both organic. And then they would sometimes have other bean varieties organic. I've also lucked out on organic tomato soup. And the brand of pozole they carry is YUMMY!

My next stop for groceries is Fiesta and then what I can't get there for cheap, I get at Kroger/Tom Thumb/Albertsons (whoever has the item on sale) making Whole Foods my LAST stop.

If it's staples I'm shopping for just to replenish the pantry, I shop each store on a different day after work so I'm not driving all over town. If I need a large amount of items from several stores That Night, then I make my list and check the online saver papers to see who has what on sale and then I label each item with the store I plan to purchase from and go in order of my drive home. That way I'm still not driving all over town.