Tuesday 5 April 2011

Ethical Food Choices in Edinburgh

Yesterday I reviewed Fast Food Nation, a book about the way that fast food is damaging our health and our surroundings. There are ethical choices, and I'm lucky to live in a city with more than its fair share of ethical food options. So here are a selection of ethical food outlets in Edinburgh:

Good Seed Bistro, Dalry Road serves delicious food made from local and organic ingredients. It makes the best gnocchi in Edinburgh and also offers specials including Chocolate Ravioli stuffed with Gorgonzola. It has a wide range of tempting desserts too.

Henderson's, Hannover Street is a vegetarian Edinburgh Institution with its large basement restaurant, the upmarket Bistro Bar and a new cafe under St John's Church in Princes Street as well as the fruit and veg shop and a bakery. It has a commitment to selling organic and locally produced products as much as possible. It also holds arts events.

Earthy Foods is a spacious shop selling a wide range of fruit and vegetables, the most delicious bread and other organic and fair trade food stuffs. It also has a cafe, which sells lovely cakes. It is all quite expensive, though.

One World Shop, next door to Henderson's underneath St John's Church, Princes Street is a fair trade shop selling mostly crafts but with a good stock of tea, coffee, chocolate, biscuits and rice.

Cyrenians Organic Farm offers work experience for vulnerable young people and produces the best respberry jam ever. Its produce is sold at the Edinburgh Farmer's Market and at some of the other ethical outlets mentioned here.

Real Foods, Broughton Street and Brougham Place - another vegetarian Edinburgh Institution, the two Real Foods Shops sell a good selection of food and toiletries, with a commitment to locally sourced and organic. However the choice of vegetables can sometimes be poor.

New Leaf, Argyle Place - a tiny shop selling food and cleaning materials, vegetarian, locally sourced and organic.

Edinburgh Farmers' Market is quite a vibrant farmers market selling locally produced and often organic produce, but for a vegetarian it is a little too meat oriented. Portobello Organic Farmers' Market near Edinburgh is a monthly organic market. Greener Monday is a box scheme and virtual farmers market. Gorgie City Farm also has a vegetable stall and has recently branched out into holding a Farmers Market.

And a special mention to Crafty Green Boyfriend's parents who grow the only apples I'll eat!


The Weaver of Grass said...

Glad to hear that you have a thriving farmers' market - it has never really got going here and we have only a very few stalls.

Rianne said...

This is a great list! Thanks for sharing. As a vegetarian and an eco-friendly shopper who is about to make the move from California to Edinburgh, one of my biggest concerns is not knowing whereto go to get healthful and earth-friendly foods and products. I will save this list so that when I arrive I can 'hit the ground running'.

Kay said...

we are lucky in Utah to have some thriving farmers markets and good grocery stores that sell local and organic foods. My favorite is Sunflower market. There is an indoor market that I haven't checked out yet. Just down the street from my studio is a neat vegetarian restaurant where you can get good food, free trade coffee and a lovely glass of wine. It is called the Vertical Diner. One of my faves. I am no longer a vegetarian but still tend to eat like one for the most part. It is easier now and more affordable! And I am getting new raised garden beds from my sons for my Birthday this month..yummy homegrown vegies coming!!!

Cathy said...

I found this post and the one below very interesting Juliet. The situation in general regarding fast food worldwide is worsening. We have a few ethically based vegetarian restaurants and outlets locally which is excellent. I can, hand on heart, say I rarely (if ever) indulge in fast food. I hate food with a lot of fat. I eat my salads au naturelle with no dressings. I prefer them that way and it is less fattening. I eat fish but not meat but even that can be contaminated in a dangerous way. I used to buy bagged salads from Tesco for convenience but after feeling ill a few times I now obtain organically grown veggies and make sure I wash them thoroughly. There are lots of things we can do to help in our own small ways. The old adage, we are what we eat, is so true.

Titus said...

Thanks Poet. So well-timed!
We're mini-breaking next week in the capital, and can check some of these out. Husband is vegetarian.

Anonymous said...

Wow, sounds fanatastic. You are very lucky to have some choice of great produce.

Megan Coyle said...

oh wow, sounds like you have a great selection over there :)

RG said...

OK Everybody - table for 10 at Good Seeds Bistro tomorrow at noon! I've included CGP and CGBF too!

Glo said...

A smorgasbord of delicious healthy delights :)

EG CameraGirl said...

You have found quite a few great places to shop for organic foods. I'm wondering if the word "organic" is used as loosely in the UK as it is used here in North America. Regulations are slowly tightening but not fast enough for me.