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Going Organic in Chiang Mai

CityNews – According to Greenpeace, the amount of synthetic fertiliser used in Thailand increased from 18,000 tons in 1961 to 1,700,000 tons in 2003. The use of pesticides has also become more widespread due to the decrease in prices.
But here in Chiang Mai, it’s easy to eat good quality, wholesome food. Although organic agriculture makes up only 0.07 percent of the Thai market, there are plenty of eateries in the city selling dishes made with organic ingredients. By buying organic in Chiang Mai, you’re not only being healthier but you’re also supporting local farmers.

The organic food scene in Chiang Mai is growing every year, with vegetarian restaurants seemingly popping up on every corner. Here is a helpful beginners’ guide to eating organic in Chiang Mai, which can be both delicious and nutritious. Bon appetite!

Stores:

Baan Suan Pak

An organic food store and restaurant that carries only pesticide-free, organic vegetables and pressed juices. Reviews say it offers a lot of good natural produce that is reasonably priced.

419/27 Wichayanon Road

053 233317

Open Monday to Saturday (9am–5pm).

Chiang Mai Bread

This bakery sells wholewheat bread with natural spreads and dips such as all-natural peanut butter and hummus. It also delivers right to your door!

495/6 Lamphun Road

089 9549931

BoonSoom Farm Store

Produces and sells locally grown spirulina and other health foods.

Star Avenue 3, Viva Terrace Lifestyle Mall

053 363601-2

Open Monday to Friday (10am–3pm)

Restaurants:

Chiang Mai Vegetarian Society

A friendly restaurant that serves whole grain smoothies and organic traditional Thai dishes. It’s very affordable.

42 Mahidol Road

053 271262

Free Bird Cafe

A non-profit cafe, all revenue goes to help the Thai Freedom House, which helps Burmese refugees in Thailand. The cafe serves both western and Thai food.

116 Maneenoparat Road

081 0285358            

Open Tuesday to Saturday (9.30-4pm) and Saturday to Sunday (9.30 am to 8pm)

ImmAim Vegetarian Cafe

Lovely open air restaurant serving healthy, organic vegetarian food as well as health products.

Santitham Road        

089 264 5511

Open daily, 10am-9pm

Brown Rice Organic Bistro

Offers a wide selection of pressed juices using organic products such as honey and coconut water, as well as homemade baked goods and Thai fusion dishes.

Chang Moi Road (Chaiyapoom Road)

086 9188428

Monday to Sunday, 9 am-11pm

Anchan Vegetarian

Rated the best restaurant in Chiang Mai on TripAdvisor, Anchan boasts an array of delicious Thai food, from butterfly pea juice to homemade Thai curries.

Nimmanahaemin Road between soi 6 and soi 10.

053 5811689

Closed on Sundays and Mondays. On other days the kitchen is open from 11.30am-8.30pm.

Khun Churn

Khun Churn offers a large lunch buffet with choices like salads, noodles, soups and stir-fries, all made with local produce! 

Old Chiang Mai Cultural Centre, 185/3 Wualai Road

www.facebook.com/khunchurn.cm

053 270 071

Open daily, 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. 

Pun Pun

Using produce from local organic farmers, Pun Pun serves wholesome vegetarian Thai dishes as well as teas and refreshing juices.

Wat Suan Dok Temple, Suthep Road

081 470 1461

Open Thursday to Saturday, 9am-7pm, and Sundays from 9am-4pm

Tea Tree Cafe.

Western cafe with vegan and vegetarian dishes and frequent events.

Moon Muang Soi 6

082 3394722

Open Monday to Wednesday (11.30am-9pm), Thursday (11.30am-12am), Friday (11.30am-9pm) and Saturday (8.30am-2.30pm).

Organic Vegetables

Basic Thai vegetarian food with brown rice and heaps of veggies.

Nimmanhaemin Soi 13

Bars:

THC

Rooftop reggae bar, which also carries hemp produce.

19/4-5 Kotchasan.

053 206886.

Desserts and drinks:

Ice Love you

Vegan ice cream available here!

23/34 Soi Srivichai, Suthep Road

085 6164312

Open Monday to Sunday, 12-10pm

Smoothie Garden

A smoothie shop which uses ingredients such as seeds, wheat and soymilk.

Kad Suan Kaew, 21 Huay Kaew Road

086 5871175

Markets:

Organic Farmer’s Market

Organic products are sold here, and most are locally produced.

JJ Market, 45 Atsadathorn Road.

Open Wednesdays and Saturdays (6am-9pm).

Pesticide-Free Farmer’s Market

On Wednesdays the market is on Nimmanhaemin Road and on Saturdays it is at the Mae Hia Agricultural Research Station. Open from 7am to 12 noon.

2 Chiang Rai Road (Nimmanhaemin)        

053 944624

Weekly market, Chang Khlan Road

On Fridays, Burmese, Chinese and Muslim vendors sell locally produced food and items at the market. Open from 6am to 12 noon.