When I want a soup or a hearty salad I go to Planet Organic. There I can enjoy mixing beetroots, beans, barley, quinoa, chickpeas, potatoes, but also lasagna, stir fried tofu, vegetarian shepherd’s pie and risotto. I can get fresh (and certified according to the standards of the “Organic farming and food – UK”) vegetables, freshly squeezed fruit juices, milk, eggs and beauty products.

Prices might be higher than in the standard stores. The value is higher too, though. A great choice for lunch, the best organic fast food and health store at the same time. The best seasonal, ethical, freshly-prepared food in the centre of London.

Planet Organic claims to be the UK’s largest fully certified organic supermarket. Renée Elliot, the founder, opened her first store in November 1995. The start-up was weak, revenues really unpromising. Then the bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) scare spread and “the misfortune of the food industry became the platform from which Planet Organic really took off”.

I agree with Renée’s analysis of the modern food culture: “A vast number of British people are more interested in cheap food than quality food and for me that just doesn’t make sense because in most other areas they believe in the exact opposite”. (Like in Italy, for example, where she now lives with her husband and children).

“Most women would be horrified at the idea of buying a cheap pair of shoes or handbag and I don’t believe any man goes shopping for a car with ‘cheap’ as his first priority so why do we do it with food?”

It is the old debate TO HAVE or TO BE.  We believe to improve our lives by buying “stuff”. Sometimes we are just buying the access to the dominant social class, instead.  Material well-being is confused with physical well-being. Choosing good food is a first step towards choosing TO BE: we should not ignore that, in the words of the German philosopher Ludwig Feuerbach, “we are what we eat”.