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Real versus Perceived Economic Savings of Garden Vegetable Cultivation

Richard Stafford, Anne E. Goodenough, Adam G. Hart


Recent media coverage regarding the home cultivation of vegetables frequently cites the financial benefits of the practice, but often fails to provide empirical evidence of savings. In this study, we present the findings of a simple savings calculator for common vegetables grown in the UK. In general, growing a small quantity of a variety of vegetables produces a modest saving when compared to organic equivalents from supermarkets, but less of a saving, or even a loss, when compared to the cheapest non-organic equivalents. Maximum savings are made on high cost vegetables such as lettuce, cucumber or runner beans; with losses made on crops such as tomatoes or peppers that have higher growing costs – especially in the first year when set-up costs also need to taken into account.


Vegetable Growing, Food Cost, Organic Crops, Gardening, Cultivation

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