Going back to nature
Divyansh Ojha was on his last year at Western when he wondered where all this food from cafes and restaurants, grocery stores and farms ends up by the end of the day if not bought or used? And the answer was quite bitter. It is just being thrown out into garbage. Speaking about veggies and fruits in particular, all these months of growing from a seed, watering, fertilizing, harvesting, storing, transporting to grocery stores or restaurants. And then as a final destination - a garbage bin. Doesn’t sound right, does it?
Ok, that is about surplus, but what happens to cucumbers of a weird shape, squashes with scratches, not ripped enough tomatoes, potatoes that are too small? Well, actually the same.
It’s like the fashion industry rules over vegetables and fruits now, and we haven’t noticed it yet. Everything beautiful, shiny, and fit goes to grocery stores’ shelves, while all that remains - curved, scratched, with yellow spots - is being rejected as like because it cannot be placed on a magazine cover. Although, from the nutritional point of view, all these vegetables and fruits are equal. They all are full of vitamins and minerals, they are good for your health and digestive system, and you won’t tell a difference if your salad is made of an ugly bell pepper.
While we all are big proponents of being natural, celebrating our diversity, and respecting our differences, we somehow do not apply the same views to our food industry. Yes, we all have heard about that MacDonald’s scandal where the brand was criticized for photoshopping its burgers for ad campaigns, yet we are still inclining to buy visually perfect products. In a long-term run it costs us all money, as we, the buyers, push the industry further to being ideally beautiful. So, farmers are forced to use even more fertilizers and pests, hire more staff to hand-pick and select veggies that are good enough, have hard times planning their income as the weather might not cooperate and they may end up with a harvest not ideal enough for selling at our stores. The cost of logistics, and in most cases the lack of such logistics, leads to the situation when it’s easier to thrown surplus or rejected food out than to sell it.
Thus, this vicious circle repeats itself to infinity. We buy beautiful and only beautiful veggies and fruits not knowing that there are tons of imperfect food being thrown out. Do you care? Divyansh Ojha does. Here comes his idea that was brought to life with help of his friends Aditya Ojha and Alyssa Coco.
The guys just made what is right - they offered farmers to buy out surplus and imperfect veggies and sell it to Londoners. Delivering right to doors. Sounds interesting?
Well, most Food Fund’s customers were shocked to discover the bitter truth and were ready to help.
Because when we buy this imperfect veggies we reward farmers for their harvest - perfect or imperfect, we help to fight food waste, we improve access to affordable healthy eating options, and we help our community to become more food secure.
Food Fund offers All Fruit, All Veggie, Mixed Harvest Boxes in a variety of sizes from 5 to 22lbs. If you are picky eater or just prefer some fruits and veggies to others, you can customize your box. Want to make a special gift to someone you care about - choose gift fruit boxes. Oh, and they just launched Organic Boxes. They really thought through everything!
There is no obligatory subscription plans, you can cancel anytime before Wednesday night (that is the deadline day for orders), you can skip a week - yup, it is that easy. So, if you are in, just make an order before Wednesday night and have you personal healthy fruit / veggie box delivered by Saturday morning (8am - 1pm, to be precise).
The delivering area now includes London, St.Thomas, Woodstock, Ingersoll, Thamesford, Dorchester, Springfield, Aylmer, Putnam, Tillsonburg, Belmont, Ilderton, Coldstream, Poplar Hill, Denfield, Lucan, Granton, Huron Park, Exeter, Strathroy, and Watford. Haven’t find your town? Food Fund will try to accommodate if you have enough friends and neighbours willing to order.
You see, supporting local farmers, saving money, and eating fresh is as simple as 1-2-3.
Text and photos: Anna Orishchenko