Finally! The rush of the silly season is over and it’s back to doing what we do best and that is introducing you to some wonderful entrepreneurs and people we have met along the way. This interview is one that I bring to you with pleasure because my Christmas and New Years would have been a complete and utter disaster if it weren’t for brothers Cedric and Clement from Avo & Co, the vegetable delivery service that saved me late last year. They helped me find so many great ingredients for all the entertaining that went on in my household… and I never had to run to the grocery store in a panic.
The brothers have generously offered a discount for our readers. For $10 off, use promocode VANILLABEIGE at avoandco.com/shop
I first met Cedric early in December when they had commented on one of my Instagram posts. The topic was around avocados. I was desperately searching for consistently good avocados… And they claimed to have them. I may not be a millennial but smashed avocado on toast is a daily necessity in our household! So I met up with Cedric and he very generously gave me four gorgeous, delicious, perfectly ripe avocados… two Australian and two from Kenya. And a few other goodies that were exceptional (peaches! zucchini flowers!).
A week later, they gifted me one of their $90 Fruit & Veg boxes which had me in heaven. There was tasty, juicy kumato (a type of heirloom tomato I had never tasted before), brussels sprouts, gorgeous baby carrots and heaps more that made me feel like I had been to a farmers market and returned, ready and willing to cook!
Top five reasons why I love Avo & Co
- Quality and service. I look forward to my friendly WhatsApp from Clement telling me what will be in my next delivery and the add-ons they have on special. The quality is second to none and because of this, I’m happy to pay the extra just to ensure that what I do get is sensational and not wasted.
- Variety and options. In my box there are always staples but “surprise” ingredients appear as well. To name them – spaghetti squash, Jerusalem artichokes, kumato… delicious items I had never met before. I have really enjoyed exploring new produce! They also send recipes with each box. These are fantastic and very helpful. It is also easy to google the ingredient and how to prepare them.
- Avocados… AND tomatos. Enough said.
- Pre planning (I almost think this is my favourite part!). I get their list of ingredients days before the box delivery and that gives me time to swap out an ingredient I find bizarre and won’t use (one swap out per order). Then I can add in any staples that I need but are not in the box already. This allows me to plan my meals further in advance, based on what I’m getting which means less waste in my kitchen and happy tummies all around.
- The add-ons… well! I think I almost spend more on these than the actual fruit and veg box! And that is because they are SO sensational that I just have to give them a try. Once they sent over an exceptional bar of Fossa bean to bar chocolate and reignited a hobby that you will soon hear more about. Another time they had sourced some raw milk butter. Their hormone, antibiotic free, free roaming, probiotic fed chicken is fantastic. And the cheeses they get!
So without further delay, I give you our interview with Clement from Avo & Co.
Tell us a little bit about yourselves
How did Avo & Co get started. How did it all begin?
It started in our undergrad days when Cedric worked part time with a fruit distributor and I worked with a vegetable distributor. That really opened our eyes! We came to realise that there’s such a big, big world of fresh produce out there. Things that taste as they ought to. When we decided to make the step out ourselves, it was a no brainer; definitely only the good stuff.
You recently gave me a taster bag of Aussie and Kenyan avocados, peaches and zucchini flower. I could not believe how flavourful and juicy the peaches were! Not to mention how rare it is to actually find zucchini flowers! How do you source your produce?
Love that you enjoyed them! You should stuff the zucchini flower with the herbed goat’s cheese that we have! We source by “following nature’s course”! That means, getting in-season produce that has been properly and fully ripened. Only then are they truly flavourful. We then make sure that they are fresh by flying them in by air. They are in storage for no more than a day or two before they are reinspected, carefully packaged and sent to our lovely customers.
But of course, when we first started doing things this way, as well as importing fantastic produce that were in season but hard to find like the zucchini blossoms, our importer thought that we were nuts and customers would hate not being able to keep their produce!
What is Avo & Co all about? What do you believe in?
Avo & Co. is about “Putting the Best Foods In a Box”. That means when our customers get our boxes of fresh produce, or chicken or any of our add ons, they can consume it with peace of mind, knowing that it’s not from a suspect source, and that the quality and taste is guaranteed. Beyond that, we want our box to bring families back to the dining table and loving their meals!
Who do you think would most appreciate your subscription box?
Anyone who’s sick of paying rubbish prices for half rotten stuff, who’s bored of buying and eating the same stuff over and over again. And anyone who doesn’t have the time but would love to see awesome fresh produce on their kitchen counter.
What is your favourite part of the job?
Planning the weekly menu and hearing all about how our customers and their families love the produce! We especially love stories about how their kids have come to love and become excited by the fruits and veg in our box!
What’s coming up next for Avo & Co? Are there any new products that you’re looking at that we should be excited about?
We have recently unearthed some great finds in Europe. So for the coming Spring season, there’s gonna be plenty of awesome French, Italian, Spanish and Belgium produce in our boxes! The first half of the year should also see us tying up with an Aussie cattle farm that insists on pasture raised beef with no growth hormones and antibiotics used. In the later half of the year, we are praying that we can start to offer locally grown organic vegetables as well as sustainable wild-caught seafood!
Is there any advice you’d give to someone wanting to start their own business?
Before you even get started, get speaking to your prospective customers, find out what their wildest fantasies about your product are, and what kind of trouble they are having with their current habits. You should be building a product for them and not for yourself. And always make time to speak to them regularly even after your business have grown!
Don’t forget! For a $10 DISCOUNT, use promocode VANILLABEIGE at avoandco.com/shop
For more information visit avoandco.com
You can also WhatsApp or content Clement directly on 9387 8067. They are open all day except for the hours of 2-4am! That’s when they are sleeping!