Today is delivery day and I can’t wait. For about a year now, we’ve been members of Ottawa Organics, a food delivery service that focuses on organic and mostly local products. Shortly after Sophie was born I realized how hard it was to do groceries. It was the biggest deal just to get out the door, and then the meltdown would hit right after I stepped into the store! Or, if I had S in the baby carrier, I wouldn’t have much room to carry heavy bags… And one thing I really hate doing is carrying heavy stuff.
Because I was nursing, and anticipating that S would start eating solids at six months, I was also giving some serious thought to eating mostly organic foods. So I got curious about joining a veggie box service and, luckily, I met a fellow mama who recommended Ottawa Organics to me. We haven’t looked back.
Lots of veggie-box services are springing up everywhere across Canada. If you have been on the fence about joining one, I can tell you what I love about it:
- My delivery is all organic. I love that because sometimes it’s hard to find organic produce (or it’s ridiculously expensive). Not all delivery boxes are organic. Many of them, however, focus on local produce.
- Which brings me to my second point: the produce is local, or as local as possible depending on the season. I get the odd tomato from Mexico, but mostly everything I get in my box is grown in the Ottawa Valley or in Quebec. This is the main incentive for you to join a delivery service. Buying local doesn’t only guarantee that your produce is a lot fresher, it also means that the money you spend is directly helping out farmers and businesses in your area. It makes you think and learn a lot more about the food you eat.
- Freshness is a huge plus here. We get our veggies every two weeks (more on that later) and it’s crazy how much longer these veggies last in the fridge compared to what we buy in the store. Think about it: The store-bought veggies sometimes have been frozen, packed, and sitting in the store for many days. With the fresh veggies, in turn, you get the shelve life at home. We’ve been eating fresh parsley for almost four weeks now and it is still intact! (It was a huge bunch). I usually have to throw away fresh herbs within about one week.
- Variety. Since the vast majority of the produce is local, you get to with seasonal ingredients. I love the variety we get in our box. I was introduced to purple cauliflower and celeriac, two things I would have never thought of buying by myself in the store. I’m also now addicted to Boston lettuce.
- The price is a tricky calculation. I won’t say it’s cheap, because it’s not (we pay $35 for a medium box, every two weeks). But if I think in terms of value, it’s worth it. Organic, local, delivered to my door? Yes, I love it! Plus, the produce is absolutely delicious.
- Now, notice that we don’t get a weekly delivery. We used to, but in order to save some money we decided to switch to a bi-weekly option. We buy any other veggies we need at the store, and we don’t worry about buying organic since most of the veggies we eat come from the box.
If you’re in Ottawa, check out Ottawa Organics. They’re awesome. And I know it’s easy to find similar services across Canada. So, veggie up! I hope you’re at least curious to learn more about veggie boxes now.