A few weeks ago I signed up to receive Riverford Organic Farm Boxes delivered to my door. I waited until I'd had a few boxes so I could review them properly for you. The first good thing about the scheme is you choose how often you receive your boxes as well as which boxes you want or you can make your own. You can have the boxes delivered weekly, fortnightly, every 3 weeks or monthly. You can pause deliveries when you are away and add extra deliveries in when you are running low. So it's really flexible, which was a huge selling point for me.
The fruit and veg are all organic and seasonal, with over 85% coming from local UK farms and orchards. The company have linked up with local farmers all over the UK so that you get the veg which is local to you and delivered fresh from your local farm. You don't need to be at home for the delivery, you can nominate a safe place, such as a side gate, porch or neighbour's house if you are not home, but you don't get to select the day of the week as they are delivered on a round so they tell you which day you will get your delivery. The money is taken from your account the day before delivery so you can cancel or add items up to 48 hours before your delivery and they collect your old box and bags for reusing and recycling.
I ordered the Organic Mini Veg Box for me and Mr Vox, but there are larger boxes available if you have a bigger family. You can order just veg, just fruit or a mixture of both in one box. There was plenty in the first box to keep us going for a couple of weeks - spinach, potatoes, carrots, savoy cabbage, onions, garlic and courgettes. It also came with a handy A-Z guide to storing and cooking the veg and some recipe cards.
Getting the seasonal veg rather than my trusty favourite veg from the supermarket, as well as being better for the environment and fresher, means I have had to be creative and come up with new and exciting vegan recipes to use my fresh organic vegetables which is a bonus. From this first box, I made the Vegan Lasagne, Vegetable Gratin, Saag Aloo and a Chickpea, Spinach and Potato Curry, Vegan Sausage and Savoy Cabbage Casserole as well as lots of tasty roasted veg wraps for Mr Vox's lunch box. Click on the green links above for the recipes.
In this week's box we had summer greens, courgettes, green onions, carrots, broad beans, spinach and potatoes and I also got a fruit box to try which included apples, pears, bananas, satsumas and nectarines. The boxes are a reasonable price, at just over £10 each and contained enough for the two of us for two weeks. I made use of the fresh food by preparing meals and desserts in a batch and freezing them in foil containers so we have ready meals over the next couple of weeks, including a gorgeous spiced pear crumble (recipe to come in a future blog post).
I had contemplated the veg box scheme for a while and always worried about not being able to choose my own veg, but so far I have been impressed with the taste, quality, freshness and inspired to make new dishes to share with you on this blog!
You can get more information or join the veg box scheme at riverford.co.uk or call 08456002311.
Just a note that Riverford do sell meat and dairy boxes as well and I know this may trouble some vegans who would rather not give their money to such companies, however I feel that it is a step better than using the supermarkets and as I live in an urban area, it is great to be able to eat freshly grown and picked organic fruit and veg. If anyone knows of a fruit and veg only supplier who do a similar door delivery scheme in the West Midlands who are more vegan friendly, please let me know by leaving a comment below.
Big Vegan Love,