Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

why does healthy or whole foods cost more than processed foods?

generally you'd think that since you don't use pesticides and other preservatives to organic foods that it wouldn't be so much. I want to buy the leaner things like fish or whole grain flour or those organically grown veggies.. but we can't always afford it.

Answer Question

Asked by SarahLizbethD at 10:37 AM on Aug. 11, 2010 in Food & Drink

Level 4 (30 Credits)
Answers (12)
  • I would like to say because they cost more than the processed, non-organic, etc. But actually I think it is because they are not bought as often and people will pay extra.
    I would like the producers to lower the price and I believe the consumer would turn to the organic. Their sales would go up and they would not need to charge more.

    Answer by tootoobusy at 10:40 AM on Aug. 11, 2010

  • They do not. Its simply a matter of knowing how to shop.

    Answer by ObbyDobbie at 10:41 AM on Aug. 11, 2010

  • Some things do, but not all. I try and plan our meals out for the week and shop accordingly, by doing that I am shopping healthy and organic and spending the same amount or less than if I just walk through the store and out things in the cart.

    Answer by buzymamaof3 at 10:51 AM on Aug. 11, 2010

  • It is expensive to farm organically - it takes years before a farm can be certified organic. Processed food ingredients (dyes, chemicals, etc.) are less expensive than "whole" foods, they are sold by the truckload, so that cost is less expensive as well.

    Answer by Scuba at 10:58 AM on Aug. 11, 2010

  • Organically grown foods are more labor intensive to produce, which is part of the reason for the extra cost, but if you buy from local sources/farmer's markets, they tend to be cheaper than a regular grocery store is. If you buy from a health food store, then the mark ups are higher b/c they do a lower volume of business & need to charge more to make up for it. If you buy in a larger HFS, like Whole Foods, they can often charge a lower price b/c they buy in bulk, therefore get a discount per case (& give an addt'l discount if you buy a case). When you buy foods that are not locally sourced, then you're also going to be paying an extra mark up for costs related to transportation & storage, especially for perishables. Also, foods that are heavily processed tend to be cheaper b/c they're not made w/real food ingredients (eg..frankenfood) and lab chemicals are much cheaper to produce/use than real foods.

    Answer by mom2aspclboy at 11:02 AM on Aug. 11, 2010

  • Hi! I'd like to invite you to the group,

    Healthy Food Happy Budget.

    There's tons of hints on how to afford unprocessed, healthy foods there. Maybe say I invited you. Lots of smart ladies there to help you out.


    Answer by lovinangels at 11:04 AM on Aug. 11, 2010

  • I'd like to know too; I'd assume all that extra ingredients they add and the processing they put in to food would cost more than whole foods, yet whole foods actually cost more (and go bad faster).

    Answer by nappeal at 11:06 AM on Aug. 11, 2010

  • There is less demand for them

    Answer by Jademom07 at 11:14 AM on Aug. 11, 2010

  • That's the thing though .. They don't use chemical pesticides, which means they have less chance of getting a full crop every year. Due to the fact that they either use natural or no pesticides at all, their crop has a higher chance of being infested by bugs. So those who grow organic may not have a full crop, but they still need to make a profit, so they jack up the cost. This helps them at least break even. Then you have to add in shipping, packaging, etc. This costs them money and if they don't get a full crop or don't get a great crop then they have to jack up the cost more. Ontop of that their organic crop takes longer to grow then those who use chemical enhancers. Therefore, they are having to either grow more at one time (which costs money) or jack up the price to even compete.

    It has nothing to do with being in demand. It has to do with what it takes to grow and sell their crop.

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 11:21 AM on Aug. 11, 2010

  • I've always wondered the same thing!

    Answer by sstepph at 12:22 PM on Aug. 11, 2010

Join CafeMom now to contribute your answer and become part of our community. It's free and takes just a minute.