Farmers Pick – a startup that has teamed up with farmers across the country to try to salvage the 25 per cent of their perfectly edible crops rejected by supermarkets based on their appearance – is expanding into rural Victoria as its consumer customer base grows.
Co-founders, Josh Ball and Josh Brookes-Duncan say they have found a way to ship to regional towns for a flat fee of $4 which also helps consumers located far from supermarkets and grocery stores and facing movement restrictions due to Covid-19.
The pair says the company has been overwhelmed by consumer enquiries to deliver nationally and this is the first step for Farmers PIck in expanding its warehouse and delivery facilities to be able to support more communities outside of metro Melbourne.
“We received a huge amount of enthusiasm from our initial launch back in June and realised so many Aussies are concerned about contributing to food waste and wanted a simple, cost-effective and environmentally conscious option for food shopping,” said Brookes-Duncan. “We want to do more and give back.”
Every Farmers Pick box contains fresh seasonal produce sourced directly from farmers. The produce varies week-to-week ensuring a good variety in every box, revolutionising the way we currently get our five-a-day. Farmers Pick also caters to all living arrangements, from singles to family’s portion sizes, ensuring affordability and value for money is achieved with boxes starting from $35 for a week’s worth of veggies.
So far, the company has shipped more than 100 tonnes of fresh fruit and veggies in metro Melbourne alone.
Brookes-Duncan estimates food waste costs the Australian economy $20 billion per year because “millions of tonnes of perfectly imperfect food never leave the farm”.
At the same time, as many as 5 million Australians are experiencing food insecurity. Farmers Pick is also working with Melbourne-based Alex Makes Meals, which prepares and delivers warm, healthy meals to Victorians who need it most, donating up to seven meals for every box sold. Founder Alex Dekker says partnering with Farmers Pick has helped to deliver 15,000 meals during the past three months to disadvantaged Victorians. “This is an overwhelming achievement and one that we are thankful for.”
Regional Victorians can now order their Farmers Pick fresh produce boxes via the Farmers Pick website.