Why people are flocking to ugly produce during the pandemic | CNN


When the pandemic hit the United States in March, Imperfect Foods found itself scrambling to keep up with a sudden spike in demand.

In early 2020, the five-year-old online grocery startup was delivering about 100,000 food boxes a week. By May, that weekly figure had doubled. From June to August, weekly orders have remained at about 200,000 to 210,000 per week. On average, order sizes have doubled year over year.

The surge shouldn’t come as a surprise. Imperfect Foods, an online subscription service that sells discount “ugly” fruits and vegetables along with staples like baked goods, meat and dairy, is in many ways a business fit for the coronavirus era. Its model appeals to shoppers desperate for groceries who have turned to online offerings to avoid long lines or crowds at the supermarket.

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