Having an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables in the house is an absolute must for me–especially in the summer, when I can’t get enough of in-season peaches, melons, and berries. I buy a mix of conventional and organic produce on my weekly trip to the grocery store.
In an ideal world, I also supplement with local fruits and veggies from the weekend farmer’s market. In the real world, soccer games, trips, errands (and let’s face it, simply forgetting what day of the week it is) all conspire against me and I don’t always make it there. I love the idea of a CSA, which stands for community supported agriculture, a weekly farm share you buy like a subscription. But so far, it hasn’t worked out well for me. I understand the inherent element of surprise (you get whatever’s in season at the farm that week) but I’ve gotten too many giant bags of mint, boxes of turnips, and an abundance of bok choy, all of which require a level of recipe research and planning I don’t have time for right now.
I recently tried a produce delivery service, compliments of Green BEAN Delivery, a year-round food delivery service that operates in parts of Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, and Missouri. They offer local produce through a network of Midwestern farmers, plus organic and conventional produce from other parts of the U.S. and beyond.
How it works: After you’ve signed up, you create an online order with the bin of your choice (they come in different sizes; the minimum order is $35). Then you select the items you want to include from their store. Items are labeled as organic, local, conventional, plus their place of origin. You can also add dairy, meats, bread, and other groceries to your bin (all products are all-natural and free of additives and preservatives). You select how frequently you want to receive your bins, either weekly or bi-weekly. You can customize each bin before delivery. Then a green bin arrives on your doorstep!
What I got in my $35 bin:
What I liked: Everything was very fresh. My son and I each gobbled up a perfectly ripe peach right away, and I cooked the potatoes that night for dinner. Having a bin of fresh produce delivered to our doorstep on a Thursday was such a treat. By that point in the week, our stash of fruits and veggies is usually pretty thin. The bin breathed new life into our meals and snacks.
What I didn’t: There wasn’t much Ohio produce to choose from, so it wasn’t the same as hitting the local farmer’s market.
How the prices compare: Some of the prices were in line with organics I see at the grocery store, such as $3.95 for organic raspberries and blueberries. Some seemed like little luxuries, like $4.35 for those three (gorgeous, delicious) organic peaches. But there’s also convenience to consider–and the savings from eliminating return trips to the grocery store to replenish, which always result in impulse purchases and unplanned spending for me.
My verdict: I’m a pretty frugal shopper, but I absolutely loved the convenience and the quality of the produce. I’ve decided to continue getting the bins bi-weekly.
If you live in Green BEAN’s delivery area (check here to find out), you can use the promo code “15RMNml” to get $15 off your first order (new customers and reactivations only). But use it quickly–the code expires one week from this post!
If you try out Green BEAN Delivery, let me know what you think!
Disclaimer: I received a complimentary produce bin from Green Bean Delivery. All opinions are my own.