Supermarkets' organic staples "89 per cent dearer" claims report

Choosing organic grocery essentials over their conventional equivalents in UK supermarkets ups the prices of a typical shopping basket by 89 per cent, according to research by money-saving website Voucherbox.co.uk.

Image: Anthony Albright
Image: Anthony Albright

Having compared prices of 19 own-brand food staples in five of the UK's biggest supermarket chains (Asda, Morrisons, Sainsburys, Tesco and Waitrose), it concluded that opting for organic on these products would cost a typical shopper almost £900 more a year.

Overall, Tesco showed the smallest price difference on its own-brand organic products, averaging at 82 per cent more expensive than non-organic equivalents, while Asda's averaged 109 per cent more expensive, and also offered fewest own-brand organic equivalents to the 19 foods on the list.

Overall, carrots showed the largest difference, with organic 208 per cent or over three times as much as conventional, followed by broccoli at 201 per cent dearer.

Among fresh produce items on the list were:

 [figures
rounded]
average
conventional
average
organic
difference
%
 Potato
(baby, 1kg)
 £1.00  £1.46  46
 Tomato
(fresh, 300g)
 £0.94  £1.43  52
 Apples (Gala,
min.5 pack/670g)
 £1.12  £2.13  89
 Onion
(brown 1kg)
 £0.76  £1.47   93 
 Broccoli (335g)  £0.46   £1.39   201
 Carrots (1kg)  £0.46  £1.40  208

Voucherbox UK country manager Shane Forster commented, "Although it's important to put health as a priority, it's interesting to see from these results how much buying organic in the UK can add to costs. The overall additional cost for these items alone is more than you would pay for a weekend health retreat, or a week-long all-inclusive holiday."


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