These are the shops I love. They carry products I use for myself and my family and so I feel good recommending them to you.
I’m based in Melbourne so the shop fronts I mention here are based in Melbourne
Green Onions Organic Grocer – 276 Waverley Road Malvern East ph 03 9572 5041
This fabulous little shop is my local and I consider myself massively blessed by this fact. Chris and Caroline run a wonderful business catering mostly to people in the local area. They really walk the talk from a sustainability perspective. Chris’s knowledge of the fresh fruit and veg trade is very impressive and he has plenty of expertise in the bio-dynamics arena too. The pricing here on fresh fruit and veg will often rival the biggest and busiest organic retailers in town just because he knows the right growers.
They carry a range of fresh meat from Belmore Organic Butchers (and if they don’t have what you want, it can be ordered in) and a good selection of take home meals as well as all the usual dairy/non dairy products and drinks, eggs, a good range of “dry goods”, personal care and household cleaning products and biscuits and snacks. Pretty much everything you need for your (organic) pantry.
They offer a delivery service and will order in for you what you might want that they don’t have on the shelf.
Terra Madre – 103 High Street Northcote 03 9489 5824
This is the Dan Murphy’s of the Organics Retailing World. Hope you don’t mind that rather crass analogy but Terra Madre (from here on known as TM) is a wonderland of organics in much the same way as Dan Murphy used to be in the wine world – the cheapest and with the broadest range.
There is not much in the way of food in general that you won’t be able to get from TM unless it’s highly processed sugar loaded crap (and they have some of that too but it IS organic!). TM has just expanded into a 3rd shop front so now it is about the size of a small supermarket inside. A visit is well worth it but be warned, it is NOT for the faint hearted. However, if you are serious about organic food and have a strict budget to stick too, this place is the bees knees. You will save save save at this place. A lot of what they sell, they purchase in bulk and they really have done a great job on reducing packaging and land fill.
They have an extensive fruit and vegetable section, almost every type of cereal, grain, seed, dried fruit that has ever been produced organically, a huge fridge section (actually a couple of fridge sections but that may be in transition), frozen foods, fresh meat, dairy/non dairy, cheeses, dips, condiments including all kinds of sauces, asian ingredients, oils including olive oils from many sources, loads of gluten free products, the biggest range of teas and herb teas I’ve ever seen, the cheapest free range organic eggs you’ll find, loads of nutritional supplements/super foods, personal care, house hold cleaning products, breads including GF, tinned foods, snack foods, kitchen ware and drink bottles, lunch packs etc, AND…the biggest range of organic chocolate in the world (I’m positive that’s the fact!). I know I’ve missed things – go and have a look yourself. And be prepared to be overwhelmed on your first visit.
A warning on TM. This place can get very crowded. But usually everyone is very nice and understanding to each other when they step on toes or put products in the wrong trolley (which I may have done once or twice….). What else would you expect from beautiful, real, organic eating people?
Product not to miss – The dried raspberries in the dry goods bin aisle – so so good!
Naturally on High – 697 -699 High Street Thornbury Village 03 9484 7131
About 5 minutes up the road from TM is this great little organic place. Many of the products sold here are different to TM so they are a great compliment to one another (tell that to the management!). NOH (as it will be known as from here on in) consists of two separate shops. Be sure to go into both. The first shop (on the left as you look at them) has mostly dry goods including from behind the counter, a fabulous range of organic coffee (which may or may not come from Jaspers coffee roasters), nuts, seeds, dried fruit of almost any description and chocolate coated most things! The aisles contain all sorts of organic dried goods (including lot’s of GF ingredients) and tinned foods, a great range from Spiral foods & Loving Earth, a good range of GF and ancient grains pastas, the standard organic fridge items and a few not so standard things, fresh breads & eggs.
Next door at number 699, they have a really good fresh fruit and veg section, a fantastic range of personal care products where you can spend lots of time browsing and reading labels, a good range of low tox make-up, skin care and nail polish as well as the full range of Australian Bush Flower Essences. They also have a nice little range of organic wines.