A Boston Organics fruit and vegetable box.
Photo source: BostonOrganics.com
Before I moved to Boston, my mom and I did a little research and found this company that would deliver organic goods to customers' front doors--or back porches or secret hideaways. It was a problem when I was living in a campus dorm (If people steal my newspapers, they're bound to steal my produce), but now that I'm living in the real world, I'm taking a chance.
Tomorrow, I get my first delivery from Boston Organics. With their programs, customers have a lot of choice:
- Customers first decide which size box they want delivered (prices range from $24-$57) and how frequently.
- Then, they decide what kind of fruit:vegetable ratio they want.
- Then, customers fill out their "NO LIST," a list of various food items that they never want to receive. On weeks when they are scheduled to receive that food, it will be replaced with something else they like. It's great for allergies or pickier eaters.
- Lastly, customers fill out their delivery and payment information and their fresh, organic food is delivered.
Patrons can also add on extras to their weekly delivery; the site offers additional produce, herbs, staples, spreads, teas, coffee, dairy products and snacks. The boxes also come with a weekly newsletter, including updates on the company and the "green scene" in Boston, as well as recommended recipes and information regarding where the produce comes from.
They also have a useful website, where potential customers can see what's in "This Week's Box" and get a feel for what to expect. They can keep up-to-date with the company blog, or search recipes for inspiration on how to prep, store or cook various items. Pluots and Celeriac and Calaloo, oh my...
It's a great business, in my opinion. It's an accredited Sustainable Business Leader and, in April, was declared a 2011 Sustainable Food Leader recipient by Mayor Menino. The organization has good relationships with local farmers, and try to source they're produce from as close as possible.
It is worth noting, however, that Boston Organics provides organic food, not necessarily local food. Though they make an effort to draw their produce from farms in the Northeast, some of their food (especially fruit) comes from as far away as Peru or New Zealand. So while the consumer may be enjoying the benefits of a pesticide-free diet, their not supporting their local farmers or their ozone layer (Think of all the fuel it takes to rush produce from New Zealand to Massachusetts).
For those who wish to be as green as possible, Boston Organics offers their soon-to-be-renamed "dogma box." The dogma box (which I think should be called their "karma box") contains eight different products sourced from as close to Boston as possible.
This is the box I decided on because I could use a little good karma. However, because local resources are less varied, especially in the winter, dogma box recipients are not permitted a "NO LIST," nor can they decide the fruits:vegetables ratio. But they can take comfort in the knowledge that their carbon footprint is smaller and that they are supporting their local agricultural scene. I'll be sure to post pictures soon of the box, and discuss how I cooked everything and the quality of the produce. Stay tuned.