Perfectly imperfect fruit and veg

Catalonia (Bellpuig)

Do you rule out peppers because they’re too twisted? Unconsciously, most of us discard some fruits and vegetables in the supermarket because they don’t follow established beauty standards. We don’t pick the broccoli whose stems are too far apart, the misshapen apples, or double-headed onions. 

In Spain, nearly 1.4 billion kilos/liters of food are wasted each year, thousands of which are discarded for aesthetic reasons. The big supermarkets have made us believe that all fruit and vegetables must have the same appearance, prioritising “supermodels” over taste and quality. Only smooth red tomatoes, straight carrots, and long but not-too-thick leeks make it. This insistence on perfection when we shop translates into economic losses for small scale local farmers, and an increase in the shocking food waste numbers.

Twins Oriol and Roger Aldomà (Tàrrega) and their friend Marc Ibós (Linyola) combined two concepts. For some time, a local farmer had been bringing Marc a box of fruit and veg every week, which allowed him to spend less time shopping, and meant he benefited from fresher and cheaper produce. They also listened to the farmers’ constant complaints about having to throw away their harvest only because of its ugly appearance.

Imperfectus was born in 2019 to give these products a second chance. They rescue and redistribute the seasonal fruit and vegetables that are rejected by supermarkets and pay a fair price to the farmers.  Through these two actions, Imperfectus aims to break the cycle of food waste, promote a healthy diet, reduce excess use of plastic, and help local producers.

It is super easy to order through their website. They offer three types of boxes: The Imperfectus box, for one or two people, the Imperfectus XXL box for families, and the 100% fruit box. Besides, in each 100% biodegradable box, they add a recipe for the main product.

As Oriol says “An imperfect tomato is not bad – it hasn’t lost its properties”:- it is simply a representation of perfectly imperfect nature.

AtlasAction: Check out the 3 different boxes on offer via the Imperfectus website.

Written by

Caitlin O'Rorke, content creator, Atlas of the Future (20 July 2020)

Project leader

Oriol Aldomà, Roger Aldomà & Marc Ibós

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