Just like in the UK, fruit and veg boxes are a big deal here and there are several to choose from but one San Francisco based company caught my eye pretty early on (good Facebook ad work guys!) and I’ve been using them ever since.
Imperfect Produce source both “ugly” fruits and veg that would normally go to waste as the supermarkets won’t accept them and surplus bits. They deliver them to your door one night a week in a very nice box which also happens to fold down flat to fit nicely into the recycling bin, I’ll let you discover for yourselves just how important this is. It’s much cheaper than the store, they suggest 30-50% which seems about right to me, but I haven’t calculated it – no one’s got time for that! There are organic and conventional products to choose from and you can have a mixture.
You will get an email a few days before your delivery day with the box they suggest for you and you can either run with it or I tend to pretty much start over as they somewhat obsessively try to send me kale and grapefruits. Keep trying Imperfect, I will not surrender to your green goodness! You can also skip deliveries as often as you like if you’re away adventuring, just don’t fancy any of that week’s offerings or you got a bit carried away and are still working your way through the previous week’s rather ambitious order. If you do have any problems their customer service is great, I shall always remember slightly manky sweet potato-gate fondly.
A special mention goes to the brown rice, it’s both awesome and much cheaper than the supermarkets. I may have also purchased the coffee, but I can’t give you any info on that as I bought the beans and am yet to purchase a grinder, smooth Alexis, smooth! Fyi, they do now stock ground coffee but I’m stubbornly refusing to buy it until I’ve got through the beans I have.
Apart from a very minor incident with a sweet potato, the fruit and veg is always great quality and to be honest I’ve never noticed it looking particularly ugly either. You also get to try some interesting varieties like rainbow carrots, purple potatoes and yellow cauliflowers which I’ve done my best mumming with in order to get Poppy to try more veg. It didn’t work, if you were wondering!
Any food they can’t shift gets donated to local community partners so even more waste is prevented and local communities are being supported. In the Bay Area, Imperfect have teamed up with Food Shift, SF Marin Food Bank, Curry Without Worry, Farming Hope, Sprouts Cooking Club and 18 Reasons and are always on the lookout for more partners if you know any great organisations you can send their way.
If you’re as impressed as me they deliver throughout the Bay Area, as well as LA, Orange County, Portland (OR), Seattle and Chicago and I’m sure they’re open to being bugged about other areas too.
I do have my eye on some rather fancy looking and less than healthy chocolates currently in stock so comment below if you’d like me to try them out for you, I really don’t mind. Also, if you have any suggestions on coffee grinders…