Buying groceries in New York City can be a pain: shopping at the Farmers’ Market may not fit with your work schedule and waiting in a three mile line winding through the Trader Joe’s produce section is not the optimal use of a Friday night. Fortunately, due to new technology and its relationship to food, Good Eggs can help change the way New Yorkers shop for farm fresh groceries.
When researching CSAs to get our produce from, we discovered Good Eggs, an online farmers market. Unlike having a weekly bundle of produce that will mostly end up in compost later, Good Eggs allows you to choose exactly what items you want, and schedule a delivery or pick up later in the week. Better yet, all of the food is grown or produced locally, and harvested after you order it—you can’t get fresher than that!
We spoke with Josh Morgenthau,the New York City Community Lead at Good Eggs, who helped us better understand Good Eggs.
Why is Good Eggs different from other online grocers?
It may seem superficially similar, you can browse and shop from all sorts of products, like other online shopping experiences, the user experience on our site is highly valued. The photography, as well as high quality product makes food look attractive. It’s amazing that technology can create a dialogue that didn’t exist before. Consumers can get involved with producers.
On the back end, we’re using high-end technology to source food in a revolutionary way. The products online are not what’s already in inventory from the big distributors or warehouse, we’re selling product before it’s already been produced or harvested, working with technology to send orders out to producers in real time, having it ready for rapid delivery.
Bread is baked the morning of delivery; the bakers know exactly how much to make [to reduce wasted product]. Produce is harvested after orders come in. We’re relying on a diverse, local food system, and using a variety of excellent local producers in our new approach to sourcing food.
Who gets to sell their food on Food Eggs?
We have strict criteria to choose which producers to work with. The company was founded in San Francisco with a mission of sustaining local food systems, creating technology and a distribution system to support local producers with really great food. We use greatest degree of transparency so consumers can learn about where their food is coming from. We choose vendors who offer small batch products, grow produce organically, or in an environmentally friendly manner. We’re creating a market for better food, using efficiency to make local food more convenient.
Why is it important for New Yorkers to use Good Eggs?
Farmers markets are unbelievable-- this is not a replacement! But often farmers and producers are not at the market, as their products are distributed several places at once. Good Eggs offers a higher level of knowledge about the producers, profiles on the farmers, and a story of how their food developed, our biggest concern is with quality. Comparing Good Eggs to big retailers that may sell local produce, their percentage of locally produced food is miniscule! Fostering a connection between producers and consumers is a really special piece of what we do.
Why should someone care about buying local?
At the core, our food chain has become such a commodity in global market, and when you go to a supermarket, you don’t know where the food is coming from, how it was produced, whether the farm is using sustainable practices or damaging practices that disrupt the environment. You can make decisions about how the food that you’re eating is produced! Because it doesn’t travel as far, local food is almost always fresher and tastier.
How can New Yorkers get involved?
For the past seven months, we’ve been building a team of local farmers, foodmakers and producers. We launched a pilot program in Brooklyn, delivering twice a week to several different neighborhoods and there are pickup spots in Williamsburg. You can check out the online marketplace and order right away. We’re hoping to expand to Manhattan and have more frequent delivery.
I hope so too!