Celebrate all things organic with the BOOM awards

With over 50,000 certified organic products available to enjoy, it’s never been easier for shoppers to choose organic. Thomasina Miers, Masterchef Winner, Co-founder of Wahaca and this year, has partnered with the Soil Association to be the 2019 BOOMbassador.

The BOOM Awards will celebrate the businesses, producers and brands working hard to make food as it should be throughout the UK, as well as commending some of the best new products and organic innovators working towards a sustainable future for all of us.

Thomasina Miers comments: “I’m thrilled to be part of the BOOMs, celebrating the best of the organic market and the people and businesses creating change in the food industry. At home I buy a range of fresh organic produce at our local market and at Wahaca we buy organic milk and do collaborations with organic vegetable producers.

“Organic farming helps looks after our planet:  we all have a part to play in this.  We can no longer afford to sit back and wait for others to do the work in safekeeping our soil, our insects, our wildlife, our biodiversity. Time is running out! We must take action! I enjoy shopping and cooking with organic produce – it doesn’t need to be all the time but start buying little bits here and there and notice how good everything tastes (and how much good it does)! I am delighted to be helping to launch this inspiring and incredibly important food awards and can’t wait to see who the public votes for!”

Thomasina Miers gets cheeky with some hearty veg

Thomasina’s Top Tips for Shopping Organic:

Organic food is great for so many reasons. Organic farming helps look after the planet by nurturing the soil instead of depleting it, by allowing nutrients to go back into the earth, rather than stripping them out. Buying and eating a little organic is therefore a neat way to take action and start caring for the health of our soil. Soil is everything – without healthy soil, growing food becomes increasingly difficult.

That’s why I enjoy shopping and cooking with organic produce as I know that I’m not only creating tasty nutritious food for my family, but helping the environment too. Here are my top tips for shopping organic to show just how easy and accessible it can be:

1  Organic is now available across the UK in over 8,000 outlets, from supermarkets and independent shops to box schemes, markets, restaurants and online. So, if one option doesn’t work for you – try another!

2  Eat less, but better meat, from animals grazed in a truly free-range environment and fed a natural diet. Pop into your local butcher for advice on the best value cuts.

3  Use a specialist box delivery scheme – from fruit and veg, to eggs, meat, herbs and honey, hundreds of organic farmers offer healthy, seasonal, organic food, delivered to your door.

4  Staples like pulses, pasta, rice and whole grains are often the same price as non-organic, many of these can be bought in bulk and often have a longer shelf-life if they are organic – so what’s not to love!

5  Try the basics – Milk is widely available and often costs only a fraction more than non-organic milk. Organic milk and dairy also contains around 50% more beneficial omega-3 essential fatty acids than non-organic.

6  Choose organic wine – not only will you be supporting a more sustainable system of farming, you’ll also be consuming less sulphur – which is rumoured to lessen the chances of a hangover!

7  Organic eggs are more than free-range –Soil Association organic standards specify a maximum flock size of 2,000, while there is no maximum flock size under free-range legislation. This means chickens have much more space to roam and exhibit their natural behaviours, like dust bathing and ranging.

8  Buy your food as close to the producer as possible – there is a wide range of farms shops and markets across the UK that stock organic produce.

9  Cooking and eating seasonally is a great way to ensure a more sustainable diet and gives the best value for money.

10.Visit your local independent retailer – these shops are the experts in organic and will often stock exclusive new products that are not yet available in the supermarkets.

To celebrate, Soil Association Certification in partnership with Abel & Cole are launching the hunt for the Nation’s Favourite organic product, as part of the Best of Organic Market (BOOM) Awards, the UK’s only dedicated awards celebrating the best of organic.

£45 million is now spent every week on organic in supermarkets, independent retailers, online and through home delivery, British baskets are overflowing with organic food and drink. From chocolate to cheeses and bunches of carrots to handcrafted biscuits like previous Nations Favourite winners Island Bakery, the organic market is BOOMing.

Now, Soil Association Certification wants to hear from the public what their favourite organic product is for 2019. Whether it’s a much-loved brand of organic tea, creamy yoghurt from your favourite organic dairy, or something a little more exotic like seaweed gin or organic kefir, now is your chance to crown them the Nation’s Favourite organic product.

 

Voting is open from 12 March to 3 June on the Soil Association’s website with the winner announced at a prestigious award ceremony in London on 26 June.

Clare McDermott, Business Development Director at Soil Association Certification says:

“Organic is food as it should be – free from artificial additives or preservatives. It has fewer pesticides, no GM ingredients and meets the highest standards of animal welfare, ensuring your produce is the best quality food and drink available.

“By choosing to buy organic, shoppers are making choices that help support a more sustainable system of food and farming. Choosing organic means working with nature to protect soil, encourage wildlife, avoid antibiotics and reduce pesticide use. The BOOMs are an exciting way of celebrating the people and businesses that are making this way of making food and drink a reality.”

You can find out more about the Soil Association Certification BOOM Awards 2019 and vote for your favourite organic product here.

 

Mitra Wicks

Editor in Chief