The latest trend to take the food world by storm? Ugly food, specifically blemished fruits and vegetables that are too ugly for grocery markets to shelve. Billions of tons of perfectly edible fruits and veggies are dumped into landfills every year because commercial grocery stores deem them unfit to sell. The issue was first brought to light by Food & Wine’s editor in chief, Dana Cowen, at TEDxManhattan last spring. Then the magazine launched a #loveuglyfood campaign to promote the eating of slightly bruised or misshapen fruits and veggies.
Today, a Tech Insider article points to a new startup that is hoping to change the common perception of ugly produce by delivering it to your kitchen. Imperfect was launched by food waste pioneers Ben Simon and Ben Chesler, who charge $12 for a box of mixed produce that would cost anywhere from $20 to $35 at a grocery store or through a normal CSA. Imperfect gets its produce a day after it’s picked, so its freshness is comparable to what’s found at farmers markets. Although the majority of fruits and veggies that Imperfect delivers are conventional and the delivery area is currently only in Oakland and Berkeley, California, Simon and Chesler hope to start carrying organic ugly food and have plans to rapidly expand across the nation.
Display your ugly fruit in a beautiful wooden bowl.
Are you willing to eat misshapen produce to help cut down food waste?