Updated: Oct 8
...... or at the very least a local veg box (even with all the possible chemicals on the crops - just saying)
I live in a reasonably-sized village with a good supermarket, considering we are quite some way from a big town. A lot of people gripe about the shop but come on, we are lucky to have it, it has most things you want and it is here on our doorstep, no need to jump in the car BUT and it is an almighty BUT - their organic fruit and veg selection is woeful. I have the choice of the occasional plastic bag of potatoes....occasional, there may be courgettes, in a plastic bag, kale....you guessed it - in a plastic bag, I can have apples and blueberries and sometimes pears, celery if I am lucky and sometimes there is a withered cauliflower or crumpled head of broccoli.
Shouldn't grumble - actually yes I should;
I am sick of having vegetables in plastic,
I am sick of having a pathetic choice of organic produce and
I get very cross at the new-fangled 'wonky vegetables'
this is not actually a thing people, all vegetables are vegetables and farmers should not have their produce rejected because they are not the industry-standard size/shape. When did we get so precious that our food has to be a certain shape????
composes herself.....I lost track for a moment there, where was I? Oh yes, organic vegetables. I have for quite some time had an organic box from either Abel and Cole or Riverford delivered weekly, until COVID arrived, mercifully, both companies continued to supply a weekly box, but before COVID you could swop and change what was in the box, now you had to accept what you were given.
What I am about to disclose makes me not much better than the precious-perfect-vegetable-brigade
but here goes.....I want to choose my veg. I loathe carrots, I didn't before lockdown but because they were in every, single flaming box, I now loathe them. I hate salad, I don't want lettuce or darned tomatoes, I certainly don't want Jerusalem Artichokes.....seriously, they taste amazing but your guts are left in tortuous spasms long after you have eaten them. So I cancelled my subscriptions, I know they were doing their best and they did a totally amazing job given the circumstances, I don't dispute that but I HATE CARROTS.
So Little-Miss-Fuss-Ass, muddled along with what was available at her local shop, or didn't eat many vegetables or, heaven-forbid - ate non-organic vegetables. This wasn't going to last too long so I have re-subscribed and the first box comes today......guess what is in it? Yes my old nemisis the carrot.
However, on the plus side, these good people have worked stoically during the crisis and by buying an on-line organic veg box you are:
Depending on your selection, supporting organic farming,
Forgoing single-use plastics - Riverford certainly give you the option of a 'packaging-free' veg box so if there is a covering on anything it will be paper or cardboard, ok so that is still 'packaging' but not plastic!!
Providing a revenue stream for independent growers and producers.
Eating seasonal goods - again, Riverford offer a UK veg box - everything in it is grown in the UK and is in season. (do you remember when it was exciting waiting for the first strawberry or peach to appear in the the greengrocers and just how good they tasted? Not like the available-all-year-round watery, tasteless offerings we have these days....showing your age girl!!
Buying local also ensures we’re not relying on complex global supply chains and adding excessive food miles, thereby limiting our impact on the environment.
Come on, it is a win-win situation and I humbly apologise to both companies for abandoning them just because of the humble (hated) carrot.
As a little footnote - I appreciate that not everyone can afford an organic veg box - certainly up to a few years ago I wouldn't have been able to have entertained it so it's all very well for me to comment from a place I am now. Local fruit and veg boxes are affordable though and are quite often cheaper than getting them from the supermarket and they may be a little muddy and they will most certainly have some knocks on them and a few holes but they will be honestly produced and keeping a local farmer/farmers going in these times of big industries taking over.
SHOP LOCAL!!.....or grow your own (that's for another post)
Check out my blog post on why to choose organic vegetables - just my opinion xx
My next post will be what I cooked with this week's box.....in case you are interested.