In comparison with just about everything else, tiny farming is so…basic. A friend sent me a link to Graze with the only comment: “Remember our chat about healthy food + convenience?” So I clicked it. I don’t know what to say. After reading through the site, I was kinda, literally, almost speechless—the service is summed up in the home page snapshot above: Graze mails healthy snacks to you at work. The UK business is based on the British National Health Service’s 5-a-day campaign that says you should eat five servings of fruit and veggies daily. Graze aims to help.
This is seamlessly intense green marketing. Every base is covered. Probably my favorite piece on the whole site is their description of how precisely-sized servings are shipped to you:
Our box is thin, strong & uses the least material possible. What’s more, it’s from a sustainable forest, biodegradable & 100% recyclable. We source our food locally wherever possible, and prepare everything in our own kitchen, keeping food miles to a minimum. We hate waste so we buy all our fresh produce on the day we send it, and any leftovers go to our local farm. And best of all, the postman delivers it, so we don’t need any vans or energy guzzling shops. We are always seeking ways to be even greener.
Fascinating! Puts direct-to-market tiny farming well in perspective! :)
7 thoughts on “Your veg is in the mail”
That just seems… strange. For people too lazy to shop?
well after being to lazy to cook it seems to be natural to become to lazy to shop !!!!
In the meantime we can say that a CSA share might also be for people to lazy to shop or who are not sure to be strong enough to buy veggie weekly at the local farmers market.
By the way Mike, do you know if there is a market for Belgian endives in your neck of the wood ? Each time I see them at 10 US $ a pound of California’s belgian endive here in Minnesota I just feel that farmers around here are missing an opportunity to make some good money during winter time with a not too difficult crop(yes it is not easy to grow them but if you manage to grow turnips carrot and so on no big deal just some place in the winter)
In the age of distraction people don’t know what to do with food anymore. We’re so bombarded with conflicting messages and compressed lives that we don’t know where to start. Graze solves a problem for busy people AND with the marketingspeak make it all palatable as you so adroitly point out. But we’re also in an age of abstraction, where modern life is increasingly disconnected from reality. A concept like this is just another somewhat absurd dimension of modern living (ie, why not just buy cherry tomatoes at the grocer and bring them to work to munch on? ah, they’re from Isreal, from the other side of the planet…). Nothing is made by anyone we know anymore or anywhere near us for that matter. Which is why I believe CSA farmers have an opportunity to inject a little reality into our daily lives. Recognize this problem of abstraction and distraction and learn from it. Then apply the most important learning – solve a problem! For example, “In this CSA bin we’ve also included a guide to show you how you can transform this local produce in X number of snacks and Y number of meals. As soon as you get home here’s what you need to do…”.
I am always sceptical of any of these box schemes! They claim to be locally sourced but I tried one once and it had oranges and bananas in it! The company you feature has a picture of olives and cherries on the front page, I wonder where they came from. I also found out that the definition of ‘locally sourced’ can mean about 100 miles from where they were grown. Sometimes people are having the wool pulled over their eyes!
Wow, interesting marketing concept. I on one hand cheer for the nutritional side of it, getting people to eat their veggies is great! On the other hand I scratch my head and wonder ‘huh?’ what ever happened to growing it yourself, visiting your local farm, going to the farmer’s market, or your local grocery…are people that lazy, busy that they have to have their food grown, prepared AND shipped to them? It all seems a little weird to me…then again a lot of things now a days does to me!
Very interesting idea. It seems there are really 2 (or more) interests that seem to compete here – though maybe not. The program can be a good way to have people eating more nutritious and fresh produce. Although the delivery seems odd, it is a way to take one of the “excuses” away – the reality that it is hard for many people to get access to it. Plus, it also takes away the puzzlement as to *what* to buy and how to know what is fresh. Once the habit and “normalness” of eating produce is there, people may be more likely to seek it out for themselves in the markets (farmers or otherwise). The site’s support of local produce and returning to local farms brings the existence of those producers to the mind of the customers. I don’t think the system reflects people’s laziness – they would certainly shop, but might not make as sound choices.
On the other hand of course, there is the fact that delivery to the desk disconnects people from the growing process. But then, so does the regular grocery store where they would otherwise shop – perhaps even more than this system. I agree with one of the other posters that CSA farmers can go a long way to help reconnect. So can outreach and activity programs in schools – children who have the chance to grow their own veg (even in a small scale pot, though some schools have larger community garden set-ups) tend to be more respectful stewards of the land, make better nutritional choices, and stay connected with the seasonal growing process. Not to mention it is a great way to learn science, planning, and food supply in general!
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