Top 5 Questions To Ask Before Joining A Produce Delivery Service
Thinking about signing up for a produce delivery service? It’s a good idea to ask yourself a couple of questions before you dive in:
1. What type of groceries are you looking to have delivered?
If you need everything from diapers to half gallons of wine you’ll be looking for a different service than someone who is just thinking about getting a weekly delivery of fruits and veggies. Figure out what your weekly order would look like, then see which produce delivery matches your needs.
2. Do you care if your produce delivery is organic?
There are a number of services that will deliver a variety of produce and a few that source only from certified organic farms. Some offer organic and non-organic produce, while others, like Full Circle, source only from certified organic growers.
3. Do you care how local your food is (and how local is your local)?
Unless they have direct relationships with growers or have a farm of their own, most produce delivery services get their fruits and vegetables from the same distributors that also service Safeway, QFC, or Fred Meyer. If you’re looking to eat with the season and support local farms make sure they’re actually sourcing responsibly from responsible growers. How to find out? Give them a call and see what their sourcing manifesto really is.
Some produce delivery services, like CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture), especially in the Pacific Northwest, have shorter delivery seasons since they’re sourcing most of their produce from their own farm. The benefit of this type of produce delivery is the direct support of local growers. But it may lack a year-round offering, home delivery (you might have to go to a specific site to pick up your order) and a lack of customization. If you’re looking for produce delivery year-round there are a number of options, but you may need to make some compromises on locally grown produce depending on your location during the winter months.
5. The all-mighty dollar! How much to pay?
Some produce delivery services have standing orders that you can choose from, others use a completely a la carte offering, and some use a mixture of both. A week’s delivery of fruits and vegetables for a household will vary depending on the number of eaters, the amount you cook at home and how many additional groceries you add each week. But expect to pay anywhere from $22 to feed two hungry adults to $45 for a larger household or for two vegetarians that always eat at home.
Most produce delivery services will have a decent website that will allow you to compare prices, options and variety, but don’t be afraid to give their customer service a call and get the answers you need to make an informed decision.
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