Sunday, January 13, 2013

The Rising Cost of Food

Most of you budget-conscience people will agree that the price of store-bought produce (fruits and veggies), both locally grown and commercial has gone WAY up in the last few years.  Not only that, I feel that the quality of store-bought produce just isn't the same.

At publix last week, commercially grown "on-the-vine" tomatoes were $3.99 per pound! Seriously!

Think about if you could grow your own tomatoes...For $4 for a packet of Beefsteak Tomatoes at Mary's Heirloom Seeds you get 65 seeds!!!  That's potentially 65 initial plants and possibly THOUSANDS of future plants if you practice seed-saving techniques.  Did you know that Beefsteak Tomatoes can grow up to 2 pounds EACH tomato???  
That's not 2 pounds per plant but per tomato.  Growing your own can save some serious cash!
But the thing is, it's not just about saving money.  Starting a garden is more than just buying seeds and {poof} you have tomatoes.  Starting a garden takes time, money, knowledge (although I've learned a lot by trial and error) and space (even just for a potted herb). 

When you take into account the rising cost of raw goods for farms, cost of wages plus expenses and a rising demand for food it looks like prices are going to get worse.  Add in the major drought we had in 2012 and we may be looking at even higher costs for produce or even food shortages.

I recommend reading  
"Why grow a veggie garden when I can just go to the store?"  
My reasons are nutrition, money, survival and stress relief.  
You can follow the series I wrote in 2011:
-What's in your Vegetables? 
-How much does a garden really cost? 
-What if I can't get food at the store? 
-Stressed Out? 

If you're still not sure about HOW to get started or WHAT you need to get started just ASK!  
Also read Mary's Top 5 Veggies and How to Grow Them.

Growing your own produce, even just an herb garden, is very rewarding.  Most importantly, I know where my food has been and that NO chemicals where used in the process. 

Gardening is a great activity to get the entire family involved and active.  I send my sister heirloom seeds and her kids just love to plant them and watch them grow.  The kids were so excited to harvest a Black Beauty Zucchini that was almost as long as my 2 year old niece!

Did your parents ever tell you 
"Money doesn't grow on trees"?
Well, I grow as much of my own veggies as possible at that means saving money!

I'll continue to share region-specific veggie garden info in the next few days
Veggie Garden in the Southern US (Gulf Coast)

Veggie Garden in the Southwest US 

Veggie Garden in the Southern Interior 

Linking up HERE! 


Anonymous said...
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Alecia @ ChickenScratch NY said...

My husband and I were just talking about this. The weather last year was awful and drove up prices. This year isn't looking too much better.

It's January and 50d in New York. My rhubarb is coming up already, if the fruit trees start budding we'll have low/no apple, cherry, pear, apricot ect harvest again. Maple syrup production is turning into a guessing game where no one wins. The 'normal' people all seem excited but the farmers and growers are more than a bit nervous

I guess I'll end my rant here!

Angela said...

We are looking at a house right now that has a great backyard for gardening. We are excited! Stopping by from the Super Sunday Link Up and am now following. I would love for you to stop by my blog and follow along.

Patricia Robertson said...

Hello new fan from the Mom's Monday Mingle. I look forward to reading.

Darla (aka Moms World) said...

love this!!! im starting my garden too! new follower from moms monday mingle. :)


mail4rosey said...

Thank you for the informative post. i thought I was following you, but I guess I wasn't. I am now though. : )

Ellen said...

Thanks! We've always had a garden. It's a great way to save money.

Jenny said...

I've already planned my garden out for this year. I'm also adding berries this year as well. I spent $7 on two SMALL packages of blueberries and blackberries yesterday. $7!! And it barely split between the 3 of us. Get them started now so next year they will be full of berries!! Great post!

Following from the blog hop!Lovely blog!!

mary_smith said...

It's CRAZY how much real food costs!!!

If you're looking to start a garden or expand your garden, please consider Mary's Heirloom Seeds!
It's my very own company and I am proud to say that customer service and quality seeds are #1.

Thanks for stopping by!!!

jeanetteann said...

I love gardening blogs and happened upon yours from the Farmhouse Porch.
Even though I live in Australia,I still found some useful info here Thank you x

Kerry Fountain said...

You are getting me is almost time for me to start my early seeds. We started planting a garden 5 years ago and I taught myself how to can and preserve. Love being able to go grab a jar of green beans from my shelf and know exactly what is in there.

Another good tip is to go to pick your own farms during the summer. We go and pick strawberries, blueberries, peaches and raspberries. Many times the farmer is there and you can talk with them (to see what they might use on the fruit/berries) and it is less expensive than what you can get in the store.

Thanks for linking up to Healthy Tuesdays Blog Hop!

Becca Acker said...

My family has always gardened. Definitely saved alot of money and was alot healthier than store-bought food.

Thanks for sharing at A Humble Bumble :)

Ruth said...

I didn't plant a garden last year but I can't wait to get started this year. I am completely looking forward to it.

Cinella Reyes said...

It's something that a lot of people don't even think about, but they should! Thanks for sharing the information. I can't wait to start our own garden. But I think if we have enough saved up in a few months I want to join our local CSA.

Visiting from HTH,
Cinella @ The Mami Blog

Barb said...

I'm worried about the rising cost of food for my family of 7. We have a vegetable garden though we're finding in this season of our lives, that we need to be careful about the time we spend gardening. It's not always as cost-effective as we think.

I would love for you to link up your post to my new Fabulously Frugal Thursday linky at!

Randomly Fascinated said...

Very true! I am not a gardener, I don't enjoy it, and I don't have much knowledge, but I do enjoy the fruits (and veggies) of gardening. My mom is a master gardener so I know some stuff from her. She grows a lot of different things, whatever she can. I am more choosey. I grow tomatoes because I love tomatoes, I eat them like fruit. There was an asparagus patch that came with our house which I really enjoy when I remember to get out there and pick them. We also got a grape vine with the house so my mom and I make homemade grape juice (my mom planted 2 more grape vines last year so we will have lots of yummy juice!). And my husband planted raspberry plants a couple years ago. I am so thankful for the money we have saved with these plants!
I would love it if you would share this (and anything else you have been working on) at my linky party!