A couple of days ago a friend of mine asked on FB how much money do we spend in food per month. It took me some minutes to answer and my surprise was that although I do have to live on a budget, when it comes to food, my choices don’t really depend on the price alone. Having mostly a plant-based diet, cooking at home and living in a tropical country where plenty of fresh food is available all year long, makes my budget pretty reasonable when it comes to buying groceries. I have been a vegetarian for almost 18 years now and my diet has evolved over time towards a diet where my values get more and more involved in my food choices.
As consumers, I believe we have the power and the responsibility of deciding which initiatives we support and which ones we don’t. In the case of food production and consumption, our choices can have an enormous impact on the environment and on people. Here are some of the considerations I take before buying my food:
- Organic: choosing pesticides and chemical fertilisers free products has a direct benefit on our health and ensure that soils and water sources don’t get poisoned.
- Local: choosing local products reduce your carbon footprint, benefit agro-biodiversity and supports local economies.
- Seasonal: seasonal products are usually cheaper and taste better. In fact these products have more vitamins and nutrients that non-seasonal ones.
- Fair Price: I prefer buying directly from the producer avoiding intermediaries when possible and I paid them what is fair. Another option is choosing certified products that ensure that the producers are getting paid a fair price for their products.
- Biodiversity friendly: I choose products coming from agro-ecology and permaculture practices that are compatible with biodiversity. Intensive agriculture even if it is organic and local can be detrimental for most species.
- Good preparation: once I have all my bag of “goodies”, I spend some time exploring recipes for good preparation and storage of food so I can make the most out of what I buy in terms of nutrition and waste reduction.
I try to consider all 6 points before buying my food but it is not always easy. In occasions I have to choose one over another and price does play a role in here, but I do my best and feel it is good to think about this before buying.
Now imagine a place that takes care of all these details for you and offers you delicious dishes consciously prepared. Looking into the quality and origine of the products and cooked in a manner that gives you the best out of each ingredient. That is VAYÚ- Alimentación Consciente, located in Quito’s valley Cumbaya in Ecuador. A cosy place that offers vegetarian, vegan, raw, sugar free options and more. With green spaces, suitable for children, pet friendly, great weather, homie attention…a true conscious cuisine. VAYÚ also has a small shop with delicious and healthy products for you to buy. It is definitely a place to visit and enjoy with family and friends. Really recommended!