It was great for me to get the chance to cruise the Atlanta-area aisles with my friend last week.
Like me, sheâs a mom of youngsters â hers are ages 4 and 16 months, and thereâs another on the way. Unlike me, sheâs what youâd call a core organic shopper â especially in produce.
My friend is a stay-at-home mom and her husband is a deployed military member, so sheâs buying for herself and the kids.
I find it amazing that even on a tight budget she remains committed to buying organic when she can and as local as possible.
Sheâs even joined a CSA â community supported agriculture â operation and gets a box of produce weekly.
Unfortunately, sheâs discovering the problem with being part of a CSA. When one gets a box of turnip greens, daikon radishes and unpronounceable spicy salad greens for the fourth week in a row, one starts to question the $30-a-week price tag.
Unfortunately for her, the grocery retailers in Columbus, Ga., donât carry much organic produce, so we headed to Atlanta.
We jumped at the chance to go to the Dekalb Farmers Market on the north side of town. I think they use the term âfarmers marketâ a little loosely. Itâs not really a farmers market but it is pretty impressive.
The whole place is laid out like a big open-air cooler, with about five aisles the length of half a football field of any kind of produce you can imagine on display.
It had more organic produce than you see in your average Whole Foods, and man was it cheap.
I saw a 3-pound bag of organic Honeycrisp apples for $3.99. A pound of bulk conventional Honeycrisps will set you back $2.99 at your average retailer.
We stocked up and moved on to Trader Joeâs. Admittedly, Trader Joeâs isnât known for its produce.
In fact, the cashier even quizzed us about our weekend, and I mentioned I was headed to a conference.
When he found out who I work for, he even asked âWhy are you here? Our produce is terrible!â
That didnât stop us from picking up some itty bitty organic gala apples for our toddlers to munch.
She took a hard look at something called âItty Bitty Potatoes,â but declined to purchase because it wasnât organic.
I canât say the same for myself. Iâll be looking for those the next time I go shopping.