Going organic in Tampere!

Author: Amanda Pokki

The “why” and “how” you can go organic in such a lovely city you’re living in.

Honeybee (Image by Annette Meyer from Pixabay)

Why should you choose organic food?

- Organic food is healthier for your body! It contains more healthy antioxidants, like polyphenolics that contribute to the health of the brain and blood vessels, and prevention of some cancers. Organic food also contains less toxic heavy metals, like cadmium, (1) less pesticides, as well as less food additives that enhance flavour and colour. Organically produced meat has more healthy fatty acids like omega 3 and it contains less traces of antibiotics because animals are only given antibiotics to treat infections, not to prevent them altogether.(2)

- The pollinators will thank you! The use of pesticides kills the pests, but also essential pollinators like bumblebees and honeybees. This is particularly worrying since 75 % of food production depends on pollinators. Pesticide use also kills worms that improve the soil quality. The decrease in insect populations also affect the birds and in turn the whole ecosystem is set out of balance.(3) Therefore, by supporting organic food production, you will also support a higher level of biodiversity.

- The animals will thank you, too! Animals in organic farms can follow their natural behavioural patterns in peace; animals like chickens, pigs and cows can roam free outside during the summer, living spaces for the animals are larger and animals are provided with things to do by environmental enrichment.(4)

- Support your local economy! Organic food requires less imported products, like synthetic fertilizer, fuel and pesticides so by buying organic food you are supporting food that is essentially more Finnish and self-reliant.(5)

Where to buy organic and local food in Tampere?

An apple (Image by S. Hermann & F. Richter from Pixabay)

Want to know where your food comes from, who grew it and how? Want to eat food that is as fresh at it can possibly be? We know that buying local and organic food can be a challenge, which is why we have gathered a list of places where you can find local and organic food in the city of Tampere, as well as a couple farms close to Tampere where you can buy locally and/or organically farmed produce. We have tried to concentrate on easy access by walking or by taking public transport.

The city has many places where you can find local and organic food near you!

Located right in the centre of the city, Tampereen Kauppahalli (Tampere Market Hall) is a great place to find a wide variety of organic and local food that operates year-round. During the summer there are a few open-air markets in Tampere where you can buy local street food, and locally produced food, like Laukontori, Keskustori and Tammelantori. At these markets you can buy all kinds of fresh produce, like strawberries, potatoes, and different types of vegetables, and enjoy your time in a variety of outdoor cafes and restaurants.

If you want food straight from producer to consumer, REKO food rings are the answer! REKO food rings operate through Facebook in groups where orders and deliveries are agreed upon. There are a bunch of REKO food rings operating in Tampere; all REKO groups in Tampere and the Pirkanmaa region can be found here.

Though they no longer sell fresh produce, Ruohonjuuri, has a wide selection of organic food products, like snacks, beverages, oils, herbs, nuts and seeds, as well as superfoods and rawfoods. They also sell organic cosmetics. Of course, basic grocery store chains also sell some organically produced foods, however this is not ideal because it increases the chance that the food has been imported from abroad.

Have the time and want to visit local farms and buy food without the middleman? There are hundreds of farms in the Pirkanmaa region, but we have only a small selection of examples for you here. Many farms have their own summer markets and little cafés right on their own property. By visiting these farms, you get a chance to connect with the people who grow your food, learn about how it was produced and get a guarantee that it is as fresh as possible!

Kurjen tila is a biodynamic farm and a community ecovillage one bus ride away from Tampere’s city centre. During the summer they sell many products grown in their own garden and demeter certified sheep’s wool products. They also host a pop-up café during the summer. Visit their website for more information!

Rekola is a biodynamic farm producing demeter certified food. This farm is not very close to Tampere, but we’ve decided to mention it here because they offer a membership after which you get 12 deliveries of produce every harvest season, grown on their own farm and delivered in town. During summertime, they also sell their produce at Tammelantori.

Closer to Tampere, situated only 5 kilometres from the city centre Ahlmanin tilapuoti ja kahvila (Ahlman farm shop and café) offers products grown on their own farm, pastries from their very own bakery, dairy products like yogurt and cheese as well as food from other local producers and local artisan work. It’s a great place to get fresh food, right from the producer.

You can find many local producers in Pirkanmaa and the rest of Finland from aitojamakuja.fi website with their address, opening hours and contact information.

There are also events regarding organic and local food that are held every year. Keep an eye out for the “Osta tilalta!” day and Lähiruokasafarievent organised specifically in Pirkanmaa.

Further resources:
Want to plan a trip to a local farm? Want to hear about your local cafes, restaurants, and food related events? For more information about local food gems in Finland click here!
This e-newspaper showcases some of the farms in Pirkanmaa.

Where to buy more sustainable food online?

Organic certifications and labels

Here is a list of all logos found in Finland that indicate organically produced food which will help you identify those products in the stores!

EU Organic logo. More info (in English).
Leppäkerttu-merkki. More info (only in Finnish).
Aurinkomerkki/Luomu – Valvottua tuotantoa. Certified Organic Production logo. More info (only in Finnish)).
Demeter, the logo for biodynamically produced food. More info (only in Finnish).
Krav, a Swedish organic logo often seen in Finland, too. More info (in English).

Further information:

There are many institutions and organisations advocating for organic food. Visit their websites for additional information on the subject!

Ruokavirasto, Finnish Food Authority
Luomuliitto, Finnish Association for Organic Farming
Biodynaaminen yhdistys, Finnish Biodynamic Association
Pro luomu, promotes production and consumption of organic products
Luomuinstituutti, Finnish Organic Research Institute

News about organic food production in Finland at luomu.fi upheld by Pro Luomu ry, Luomuliitto ry and Luomuinstituutti.

Check also the challenge Relish Responsibility

(1) https://luomu.fi/kirjoitus/luomuruoan-terveellisyyden-tueksi-loytyy-tutkimustuloksia/2/
(2) https://proluomu.fi/mita-on-luomu/turvallista-ruokaa/
(3) https://proluomu.fi/mita-on-luomu/ymparisto-kiittaa/
(4) https://proluomu.fi/mita-on-luomu/elainten-hyvinvointi/
(5) https://proluomu.fi/mita-on-luomu/yhteiskunta-hyotyy/