Class One veg box

Veg box schemes are becoming more popular in Japan as bad weather causes domestic produce prices to rise in retail outlets, reports The Japan Times.

Vegetable delivery services traditionally cost much more than shop-bought produce, but the gap has narrowed over the last two months since supply issues made supermarkets put up produce prices, the paper said.

Tokyo-based delivery service operator Radishbo-ya Co told The Japan Times that demand for its assorted box of vegetables had increased by 50 per cent in November over the prior month.

“Prices of our vegetables are sometimes nearly twice as high as those of vegetables sold at supermarkets,” a public relations official of Radishbo-ya said. But he added that some vegetables are now available at lower prices than at supermarkets.

Meanwhile, Oisix Inc, which has been offering fresh food delivery services since 2000, said its fruit and veg box sales jumped 70 per cent in October compared with June.

The surge in demand for veg-box deliveries in Japan is also being attributed to growing consumer demand for organic or 'pesticide-free' produce typically supplied by these schemes. The convenience of being able to order online is also said to be a factor, according to the report.