Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Autumn gardening and progress on the ethical consumption challenge!

This post is just notes on my grocery shop this week before I forget what I've learnt and because groceries are just not very interesting, I'm interspersing it with a few pics I've taken lately.

Little Autumn froggy!

I have to say that this ethical challenge I've set for myself made my grocery shop very difficult this week...!

Chook ravaged silverbeet! Both pots for the chooks (one with kiwi the other with passionfruit) are showing signs of over-love!

There is apparently no ethical company and covered by the ethical consumer guide that makes real chicken stock.  Massel is the only Australian owned stock maker listed in the ethical guide but they are vegetarian so no good for real chicken stock.

Lilydale free range chicken whilst marketed as the kinder choice, is owned by Baiada and is under fire for unsafe and brutal workplaces and exploitation of workers.  Their unsafe practices resulted in the decapitation death of an immigrant contract worker, Sarel Singh.  Workers are told they cannot access workers compensation if they are injured at work.  Yet the company’s premium product is marketed and sold as... an “ethical choice” for consumers. Hrmm...I don't really eat meat but I do believe in chicken broth for colds and my little boy has a chest infection right now.  So what chicken can I get?  The guide thinks inghams is ok...but their chooks aren't free range so I'm just not sure. Decide to skip the chook after all.
Sophie so proud of herself and so much more confident since laying,
hopping up on my lap and coming to see what I'm up to

It is very hard to find frozen vegies that are from Australia...and not from Canada, USA or New Zealand!

Mission wholemeal flatbread which I use to wrap kids lunches in are Mexican but there's no ethical rating info available. The alternative, Wattle Valley wraps, my kids don't like.

Autumn acorn!

The things I've been shopping ethically today and don't need to change habits on are...

Huggies nappies THANKFULLY gets a tick!
Master Bok (2) made me a 'traffic jam mummy'

Barilla pasta and sauces are good!  Hooray for quick weeknight meals!  I like their pasta.

What else did I buy...hrmmm...planet organic Wintertime tea.  I have to tell you that it is horrible to my palate! but it gets an ethical tick.
Some random garlic is sprouting in unlikely places...

All of my fresh food comes from the garden, farmers markets, or the CERES fair food box...all of my jam comes from farmers markets as well or it's clear that they are locally made. So I think I'm safe there with my fruit and vegies.  I've added a new item to my CERES fair food box this week...I used to love green & blacks organic chocolate but seeing as they were bought and are now definitely not fair trade, I need an alternative!  I'm trying Almond & Purple Corn raw dark chocolate, by Loving Earth Organic Chocolate. It sounds fab!  Well I was sucked in by the blurb anyway  :)  I'm such a sucker sometimes.
Purple corn is an iconic heirloom variety of maize from Peru. We use purple corn extract in this chocolate bar. The extract is the powder left when all the moisture is evaporated out of the pulp of the corn cob - all the purple antioxidants are highly concentrated in the cob of the purple corn. It is the most purple natural product on the planet and therefore loaded with the anthocyanin antioxidants. It has a slightly bitter malty whisky flavour that blends beautifully with the chocolate. When you taste it, the hint of a liqueur flavour that comes through is from the purple corn extract.

Harvest of the wine grapes - sure would love to have some of these in my backyard!

Earth Choice washing detergent thankfully also got the tick.

Spiral foods noodles, ramen and miso got the tick.

Lots of seeds have sprouted and are growing! (Miss Bok's plot)

Whitewings flour ok.

From my favourite winery

Jalna greek yoghurt ok.

Devondale and Coon cheese ok.

Loads of peas everywhere...

Lindt got the tick although they are swiss (and thus so so good!  I get huge jars of lindt cooking chocolate drops and they make the difference I reckon in my baking of chocolatey goods) so we'll have chocolate cake and chocolate brownies after all this week!

Rogue brassicas sprouting - oh and eggs

Cheezels got the tick hooray! although of course the nutritional value/harm still makes me furtively sneak them into the house so that Mr Bok doesn't see me!  :)  I know I know we all need a vice and my weakness are cheezels.  Horribly bad for your health but I like em!

Elderberry has survived the chooks

Blood oranges are forming

Baobaco is doing well - wasn't sure if it'd survive here

And that's my weekly shop done!  Another 3 weeks to go...


  1. So many peas, can Miss Bok share with Ilhan some of its produce later? My husband have a weakness with chips but he always use my first son Ilhan as an excuse.He eats it while I am at school. Is your chooks giving practise for easter, finding eggs.

  2. That's interesting. I use quite a few of those products. No meat for me, but I try to avoid pork for the other half as he likes his meat.
    Who'd have thought Cheezels were ok?

  3. It does seem to be a minefield when it comes to shopping ethically/locally/sustainably/GE free/free range/Australian etc etc. I am trying to make small improvements just one at a time. That is all I can cope with and I have 4 kids who love white bread...arrrgghh.

  4. I am glad I have found you so much info in here I need to read!!!!
    Regards from London
    Love gardening but i am hopeless when it comes to it, english weather does not help either...

  5. What did you think of that chocolate? I bought that one a little while ago, (it was the pretty packaging that caught my eye I'll admit.) Mr Chocolate and I decided that if we had never eaten regular chocolate before it would be delicious, but seeing as though we had, it wasn't quite as delicious as I'd hoped. It's still sitting patiently waiting to be eaten 5 weeks after I bought it, waiting for all other stocks to go down first.

  6. Inghams do a very nice free range chook, if you can track it down...

  7. I admire how conscientious you are. My next google will be for products that are friendly to our environment.

  8. Hello lovely people!
    Diana, LOL I'm like your husband! Always sneaking in junk food hoping Mr Bok doesn't catch me! And yup it's an easter egg hunt daily around here. Funny chooks.

    Cityhippyfarmgirl! I tried that loving earth chocolate...and have to agree with you - it is going to stay at the back of my pantry for a while until I'm desperate I think! :)

    Hazel, 4 kids! When do you ever get time to post! I'm in a flap most days and I only have 2 :)

    Sarah, I always get the otway pork for the kids/hubby. Got good ethical ratings too!

    Margarita, you have crap gardening weather sometimes but you have the best crafty markets! Wish I could go to of cabbages and kings...

    Celia, I'll look out for that chook but I've never seen it anywhere! Boooooooo!

    Hallo Bella's mum! Good on you! If you find anything interesting, let me know!

  9. Fabulous post! I'm trying to move towards more ethical shopping at the moment and am finding it a bit of a pain (but worth it!). I've found that shopping takes SO much longer when you stop to read the back of every packet.... the frozen veggies I got caught out with a while back - got home after not reading the packet only to discover they had come all the way from China! Keep up the good work - look forward to reading more of your blog!


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