A Conscious Feast by Nicole Aloni

The Conscious Food Chain: Recipes. News. Travel.

Grocery Shopping Bootcamp: GoodGuide

April 14th, 2010  |  Published in Green Living, Uncategorized  |  3 Comments

photo: ralphbijker

The Good Guide: Love this concept.

As if it weren’t challenging enough to be able to afford decent, fresh, seasonal foods, in my life there’s so much more to consider.  Like many of you, I also feel the urge to buy locally grown products, support our local merchants, buy meat (if you still do) from humanely raised sources, look for recycled packaging, and scan ingredient lists for toxins, GMO’s, and corn syrup spinoffs.

If you’re like me, shopping has become a drag. In my efforts to be responsible, green, humane, and healthy, grocery shopping has turned into bootcamp. Instead of strolling in and picking up something that sounds yummy for dinner, I often feel morally and intellectually challenged to make my selections. The grocery aisles have become a giant food-centric IQ test.

Phooey.  And BTW, that’s before paying any attention to which is the tastiest product in front of me.The Good Guide provides a one-stop answer to a lot of your shopping questions by providing a complete rating of how companies that produce national products do business.  Their scores reflect  an assessment of a slew of important issues ranging from how the company handles equal employment, to the quality of their ingredients, and how well they manage recycling and environmental programs.

It still doesn’t help you balance the choice between local and organic, or humanely raised vs. grassfed. But it provides some surprising and important insights into national branded products. For instance, the La Brea Bakery, Organic Wheat Loaf is rated as “below average”. On the other hand, the mega brand Sara Lee, who I might have expected to rate poorly, was near the top of the list with their  ”Delightful 100% Whole Wheat Bread”.

I learned something unexpected every time I clicked through this site. Check it out. At least it may save you time in the canned foods and breakfast cereal aisles so you can call your astrologer when you get to the meat case. You can even download it as an iPhone app (of course).

photo M. Rodriguez

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Responses

  1. Kate Muker says:

    April 27th, 2010at 8:13 pm(#)

    I love the good guide site I was recently introduced to it by a good friend who works for an organic manufacturer. Something I learned about the site is that choose to review products but also provide companies the option to submit their products and provide the full picture about sustainability, social responsibility etc. I was delighted to find out that although a company pays to submit their products it doesn’t have an affect on how their product is rated. It is simply to cover the costs for them evaluating all the products.

  2. Fern Hotels says:

    July 1st, 2010at 11:51 pm(#)

    Hi there. Thanks for sharing. We love to check out whats being said about green topics around the world. The site is useful in many ways, so is the post! Food rating and grading is very essential in making wise choices while shopping for groceries. The first step is definitely the right purchase :)
    We have our own blog in place where we discuss green ideas and would love to hear your views on the same!
    http://www.fernecotel.wordpress.com

  3. Andrea says:

    June 14th, 2011at 5:14 pm(#)

    I agree. We did a similar experiment. We “GoodGuided” our entire grocery list for a week to see if it was do-able and affordable. (You can check it out at http://talesofgoodness.com/2011/05/31/spend-responsibly-goodguide-your-groceries/ if you like.) In the end, it’s worth it for us. Apparently GoodGuide now has an iphone app that can be used to find ratings while at the grocery store – that could be useful too.

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