Mischief Managed: An honest review of Misfits Market
You've probably seen it around- Ugly Fruit & Vegetables! Cut your grocery bill in half! Silly shaped eggplant! Colon shaped sweet potato! I saw it, I thought about it briefly, but didn't give it a second thought. That is - until I saw my friends start posting photos of their Misfits Market produce boxes.
Now, a little background on how I usually get my produce. In the summer, we belong to a local CSA. A CSA, short for community supported agriculture, is like a magazine subscription for food. You pay a local farm up front, at the beginning of the growing season. Then, you get however much they can produce for their shareholders. If it's a year with a bumper crop, great! Extra tomatoes! If it's a drought year or a powdery mildew gives all the tomatoes a blight and they produce little fruit - you're out of luck. But your neighbor, the farmer, who puts in the time and effort no matter what - still gets to make a reasonable living. I love it because I get to know my farmer and how my food is grown. I also learned about soil management, tilling and no till techniques. I learned about pesticides and organic certification and even a little about dairy farming. I love being a CSA shareholder and I recommend it to anyone! Take a look around your community and see what's growing.
In the winter, I choose not to get a share because I get pretty tired of winter squash and we prefer more variety. I typically purchase frozen or fresh conventionally grown (non-organic) produce. I shop around to save a couple bucks and make sure I can eat A LOT of fruit and vegetables. Saving money is one the main reasons I don't purchase exclusively organic. I purchase what offers the best deal and what I'm going to be able to use.
Not much produce is growing this time of year, so when I saw the Misfits Marketplace box had become popular among my friends I was intrigued. Could I cut my bill in half? Or even just a few bucks? So I got the referral code for a discount and tried the smallest box, a "mischief box." Each mischief box hold 10-12 lbs of produce, all organic. The website, says it's ideal for two people with some cooking and snacking. We cook a lot in our house. Dining out and fast food are pretty rare. The bigger box, the Madness box, serves about five people and is ideal for homes that cook daily. Since it was our first time, we tried the Mischief.
Ordering the box was simple, we picked our best delivery day. I chose Saturday so I could cook and prep it all on Sunday for the following week. We got an e-mail a few days prior to delivery giving us an overview of what we might expect to see in our box.
It came Saturday, late morning. The packaging was reasonable with Styrofoam tubes surrounded in a green plastic film to keep the food from getting too banged up and to keep it cool (no problem here when it's 20F outside). Some smaller items were packed in compostable plastic bags. I excitedly opened the box up with help from my toddler daughter who exclaimed happily "the food!". What we found inside looked good, nothing too oddly shaped or even "ugly".
Here's what we got:
2 large grapefruit
1 massive beet (about 3-4 lbs)
1 massive butternut squash (about 5 lbs)
4 sweet potatoes
1 head of celery
1 bag of green beans (1/2 lb)
So after seeing it, unpacking it, washing and prepping it, would I do it again? Honestly, no. It didn't seem like a great value to me. The majority of my box, which is filled by weight not volume, was filled by the beet and butternut squash. I love all the foods that were included but felt I could spend $20 at a farmer's market or grocery store and get a larger variety. People who usually purchase organic, fresh, produce find this program to be a deal. Ditto for people who live in an area with limited access to farmers or a high cost of living, such as NYC. For me, not so much. Ultimately, for those segments of the population - this is a good to great deal. We prefer to control our produce choices in the winter, which is why I would not do it again.
(This is not a sponsored post or an ad.)