If you have a veg box, here's a link to the 2007 Veg Box Awards.
If you don't have a veg box, you may be interested to know that Guy Watson of Riverford has calculated that his boxes are often cheaper than the same selection of non-organic supermarket vegetables: last week's comparison with Tesco/Sainsbury/Waitrose showed you'd be out of pocket by 27% for a minibox, 72% for a small box, 55% for the medium, 74% for the large, 40% for the fruit and veg, 42% for the summer box. All this before we try to put a value on the freshness and quality. Which is light years ahead of anything I've ever bought in a supermarket.
Lots of people say they don't subscribe to a veg scheme because they don't know how to cook unfamiliar vegetables ... here are links to recipes at Riverford and the awards. But there's not much that's unfamiliar - and that which seems unusual often isn't really: I"m thinking particularly of kohl rabi, which I would never have bought because it looks so weird, and which supermarkets don't sell because it's the ugly duckling of the cabbage family .... but the taste is sublime, like a really fine and refined broccoli - and last year, I had a note from a man who drives long distances to stock up on kohl rabi during the season.
If you don't have a veg box, here's a good reason not often cited: it puts vegetables at the heart of every meal ... you think, what shall we have with the butternut?
Oh yes, and someone said to me that subscribing to a big scheme like Riverford was as bad as using a supermarket. No, no, no and no again. One, the local schemes round here were all oversubscribed when I tried to sign up. Two, Riverford doesn't airfreight anything. Three, it is much much more environmentally friendly to have one van doing a regular round to, say 20 customers, than to have those 20 customers all get into their cars and go to the supermarket. Four, Riverford grow vegetables all over the country. Five, everything is seasonal and organic. Six ... well, you get the picture.
Guess who I've voted for!
I'll get off my hobbyhorse now ... but DO give it serious consideration
Colours of the season - Hydrangea quercifolia 'Snow Queen' R.C. Sherriff's The Fortnight in September Skein Queen's Delectable in 'Golden Plum'
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