Update on Delivery Fees

We are honoured to be able to deliver healthy organic food to you in these crazy uncertain times.

But to continue to do so while keeping everyone safe, managing increasing costs and maintaining a high level of service, we have had to make some essential adjustments to our delivery fees.

As of today, and as long as we are at Alert Level 3 or 4:

  • Orders over $200 get free delivery
  • Orders over $100 get discounted delivery ($7.99).
  • Orders under $100 incur the full delivery fee ($14.99).

These changes are urgently needed so that we can continue to operate safely with a high level of service as delivery costs increase. Once we are off High Alert, we will re-evaluate.

We hope that you understand and please know that this decision was not taken lightly (and only just covers our costs).

If you live alone and often spend less than $100, you may wish to do a fortnightly order to reduce the cost of delivery.

Remember, the reason Ooooby doesn’t use cheap couriers is because they require MOUNTAINS OF PLASTIC to keep food fresh, cold and safe to eat!!

Temporary changes due to COVID-19. Please read.

Sheesh, what a week!

Here are some key things we’re temporarily doing differently while under lockdown to overcome restrictions and stresses on our supply chain, production systems, infrastructure and teams.

* NON-CUSTOMISABLE : As long and the situation in NZ remains critical, it is next to impossible to provide a high degree of flexibility. There is plenty of food, we just can’t consistently get specific things at specific times in specific quantities from our growers. Update 2/4: Supply is improving and we aim to add back some customisability for orders next week. Stay tuned.

* ONE-OFF ORDERS: Until further notice, you have to subscribe to a box. You can still go in and skip various deliveries and cancel anytime, but subscriptions give us the ability to forecast demand into the future and give our growers enough lead time to get you your food! Our growers are so grateful for this because it removes the uncertainly around how much to plant and how much to harvest.

Auckland & Waikato Only:

We’ve had to simplify our range of boxes , due to unpredictable supply of some things and to focus on getting food on doorsteps in these challenging times…

* VALUE BOXES:  Firstly, these were 70-80% identical to our Organic Boxes, because good value is essential for all boxes. The key differences were:
  – Value Apple and Pear of the Week were from Windmill Orchard in Coatesville (and minimally sprayed). Not organic. Graham of Windmill is over 70 and not available to delivery to us during Alert Level 4.
  – Organic carrots are an incredible 5.6x more expensive in NZ due to limited supply! (Did you know largest organic carrot grower in NZ, Scott Lawson, just sold his farm to a conventional kiwifruit corporation for export? What a loss!). Anyway, we replaced organic carrots in value boxes with conventional ones for this reason.
  – Value boxes had much more repetition because when there was oversupply of something at a great price, we helped our growers move it by going to town on it! (Organic Boxes rarely have the same thing 2 weeks in a row, normally).
  – Value boxes almost never had fancy stuff like fresh herbs in them. The focus was on filling bellies with delicious organic local food.

* TINY BOXES: We need to reduce the number of boxes to make them easier to plan, order, receive, pack, etc. Everyone is eating all their meals at home now anyway, so this was a no-brainer.

We are temporarily putting all Value and Tiny Boxes on hold and asking people to please choose another one.

Please choose another box before Monday at 11:30am, if you haven’t already.

If you have questions, please look at our FAQ that is being updated everyday. Calling and emailing us slows us down and may prevent us from getting you a box. So please don’t unless it’s super critical.

We hope things will return to normal soon and in the meantime trust that you understand that these changes are to serve you the very best we can under these conditions.

Thank you so much the for the heaps of support and encouragement you have sent us over the past week. It keeps us going knowing we are making a difference!!


Your Ooooby Crew

COVID 19 Alert Level 4 Update: Ooooby is essential!

Hello Oooobies,

What does Alert Level 4 mean for Ooooby? 

We ARE classified as an essential service so put your mind at ease. We are continuing and will keep working hard to bring you your wholesome organic goods.

Please keep in mind that:

* We have had a HUGE influx of orders. We CAN cater to this, but we are a small team doing the best we can to keep you all healthy and happy. A number of items are currently out of stock on the site, but we will be we have LOTS more arriving for next week – you all just cleared us out in one swoop this week! We may put reasonable limits to prevent hoarding, so please don’t bulk buy.

* Due to a spike in traffic, our website is a little slow (but not too bad, all considering!). More server resources are being added. Mobile phone networks are also congested, so not all calls are coming through. Everyone is doing their best!

* Please again remember that we are still a small team. We are working really hard to cater to all of your needs and to respond to all of your queries, but there are only so many hours in the day. Please help us by not emailing or phoning us if it’s not SUPER critical. It’s not that we don’t want to chat or help you out, we are just really stretched at the moment.

* Under the Level 4 conditions we will have some operational restrictions, so again please keep this in mind. We will of course do our best to fulfill your orders as placed, but things may take a little longer or there may be a need for us to make decisions related your order on the spot. We may not be able to always communicate this ahead of time and might need to simply make a call. You will always get your full value or will be credited accordingly, if required. 

It is indeed strange and unprecedented times. We are privileged to be able to bring you great produce and play our part in helping New Zealand stay healthy at this time. We take that responsibility very seriously.

It may not seem like a priority right now, but the sun will continue to rise and the birds are still chirping. Don’t let the situation stress you out unnecessarily. At some point in the near future we will be able to look back at this and say “despite the overwhelming odds… tomorrow came”. 

Let’s be considerate, kind and understanding. Please continue to support one another and remember that we are all in this together.

Thanks so much everyone!

Boost your immunity!

Boost your immunity!

You may have noticed a slight crispness to the early mornings…

Autumn is approaching…

With it comes less sun, more rain and it’s the time of year when we are most likely to catch something.

Why not start now and give your immune system a boost!

One of the lovely suppliers to Ooooby Christchurch, Cornelia from KoruKai Herb Farm, has written up a piece with advice, and here are the main points summarised for you:

Eat a varied, colourful diet

Include a wide range of fresh fruit and vegetables that are organically grown, nutrient-rich, seasonal and pesticide-free (oh look – just like those supplied by Ooooby!!)

Eat the rainbow! Add colour and therefore a wide range of nutrients and antioxidants to your diet. Include fermented foods in order to nourish and replenish your gut microbiome. Remember 70% of your immune system resides in your gut.

Get plenty of sleep and eat less in the evening.

While we sleep our body recovers and melatonin is released. It is not just a sleep hormone, it is also an immune priming hormone. So if you don’t get enough sleep your entire immune system is dysfunctional. Avoid having your main meal of the day before bedtime so your body can concentrate on detox processes in the body and not on digesting food.

Reduce stress

As hard as it may sound in our busy world, do take some time for yourself. Enjoy a walk in nature, at the beach and by a river. Spend time with loved ones – nothing better than a meal enjoyed with family and friends around a table filled with laughter.

Herbs and Herbal Remedies for Immune and Lung Support

One of Cornelia’s most valued herbs is elderberries and it is used in all of KoruKai’s immune support remedies. Elderberries have a role to play in the health and integrity of our mucous membrane barriers. They have been used for winter ills and chills for centuries.

Collect easily accessible and wild herbs like thyme, hyssop and plantain; they make a fabulous tea.

So whatever your plan of action, remember that eating a wide variety of fresh, seasonal, organic produce will aid your body in the quest to remain healthy. The food we eat is the first of the building blocks we use to create a healthy body and immunity. Be conscious of what you use to set that foundation.

And of course remember that food can bring joy. Don’t forget to enjoy the privilege and pleasure of sharing good food with great people – perhaps that is the best elixir for a healthy life!

Buon Appetito!

What is TAG2 Produce? Is it fair to call it “ugly”?

What is TAG2 Produce and is it fair to call it “ugly”

TAG 2 Produce: Eh????

When it comes to fresh produce, or any food product in general, there need to be standards in place. Some reference, which can be used as a yardstick for comparison and to make it clear to everyone involved what is expected and what they will get.

The “TAG” system is one that was introduced many moons ago, primarily for industry “stakeholders” for the following reasons:

  1. Help buyers make informed produce purchases
  2. Assist buyers in purchasing the quality of produce to meet their needs
  3. Assist suppliers of quality product to be rewarded for their produce

This does however also relate to consumers and us “everyday” Joe and Jill Soaps. We too would like to know what we are getting.

The system is essentially a simple one that segregates produce into different “quality brackets”. These have been established based on pre-set requirements for “good quality products” and most of the criteria used are good and fair. Sadly though, due to years of marketing and now consumer “expectations”, the appearance of a product, rather than the actual nutritional value, or means of growth (organic – free form all the nasties), are not given much weighting at all, so then, what really is true “value or quality”?

TAG standards / Grade Standards:

Currently the 3 TAG standards set for “acceptable” produce that can be taken to market are as follows:

  • TAG1 – This is the first grade for top quality produce
  • TAG2 – This is the secondary grade for good quality produce
  • TAG3 – This is the minimum grade for acceptable quality produce

The different “TAGs” therefore come with a different price too. In our opinion, the actual quality and real value is not given enough weighting, but is this always a bad thing?

Ooooby’s Opinion:

We love TAG2 products! In particular organic TAG2 products. All fruit and veg is beautiful to us, and if it is grown following organic principals and in healthy soil we know it is nutritionally dense too!

The outer appearance of an item is not only what we look at. If a product has had to fight hard to get around a rock in the ground and ends up a little bent or “wobbly”, or perhaps became somewhat blemished during harsh weather conditions, but is still mostly good on the inside, we want it! Some might even say that these products are the overachievers, having overcome hardship to become what they are now. We want to see this produce going to a home and becoming a part of a family meal. Not discarded as waste.

There are also other added benefits of this – because society has decided that these examples of nature’s perfect imperfections are of less “value”, it means that we can source them at a more affordable price and therefore give you better value / more volume in your Ooooby order.

So when you see TAG2 products in your Ooooby box, don’t be alarmed, but rather be excited. You will be getting great organic produce, playing a part in preventing food wastage, and even more bang for your buck!

5 reasons why growing your own vegetables is good for you!

5 reasons why growing your own vegetables is good for you!

The weather has warmed more than a little recently in Auckland. Now, as ever, is the perfect time to start thinking about your veggie patch. Whether you’re an avid veggie gardener, or a bit of a rookie, growing your own vegetables is good for you, your family, and our planet. Even if you only start small to supplement your purchasing elsewhere it can be awesome Here’s why!

A veggie patch gets you moving! 

When you start growing your own vegetables, you’ll find yourself being a little more active. It’s great exercise! Research has suggested that a healthier way to stay active, is to try and incorporate exercise into our daily lives, for example, climbing the stairs, walking to the shops, and gardening!

Being outside a little each day also means you get a healthy dose of Vitamin D.

Vitamin D is super important for bone, muscle and immune health and many of us don’t get enough. Spending a little time in your veggie patch each day, watering, harvesting and caring for your plants, not only gets you moving, it also means you get a healthy dose of sunshine! But remember, it’s about moderation. Be careful not to get too much sun exposure.

Gardening can be fun for the whole family, and it’s great to get the kids involved. 

It’s a great way to teach your kids about food, and where it comes from. It encourages them to have a healthier relationship with food, teaches them responsibility, and they’re also learning a useful skill for life. Growing your own vegetables can involve the whole family, from choosing what to grow, to looking after the plants. What a wonderful way to spend time with our family!

Growing your own vegetables is less wasteful.

You can pick what you need, as you need it. No produce sitting in the back of the fridge going to waste. And you also save on packaging, which is great for the environment.

And because a veggie patch can be less wasteful, it also saves you money. You no longer need to buy a punnet of rocket or thyme, because you’ve grown them yourself!  For example, planting a couple swiss chard plants per family member, will mean you may never need to buy swiss chard from the shops again. And swiss chard is easy-to-grow, and not particularly fussy, and the same plant will produce for more than one season, maybe more!

Yes, growing your own vegetables takes time and a little commitment, but it’s time well spent! And it’s an incredibly rewarding experience.

Love the long weekend!

Love the long weekend!

While, if you have kids, it may feel like the holidays are going on forever… Evenso, don’t forget to still take time and enjoy the summer and the bank holidays we have coming up.

For many of us, stat holidays and long weekends are an opportunity to catch-up on admin, chores, work, and even sleep! But holidays should also be an opportunity to step away from the hustle and bustle, spend time with friends and family, and to rest. Here’s our holiday ideas for your next day off:

Have a picnic and enjoy the summer sunshine

Get the gang together and plan an afternoon picnic. And keep it simple! Get everyone to contribute, and think simple salads, sarmies and finger foods. Why not take along some fun games, the kids bikes, and your book. And don’t forget the picnic blanket, and the cushions, because nothing beats a nap in the shade on a hot summer’s day! Getting outside gives us an all important Vitamin D boost, which has been shown to make us happy, and help our immune systems – exactly what we need as we get the year up and running again.

Make brunch!

Holidays are for special treats, like pancakes! So why not make a whole lot, and have a marvellous brunch! Invite the family, and your friends, and get everyone to bring something to add to your beautiful brunch spread. You could do bubbles, G&Ts and freshly squeezed juice, and have a wonderful meal with the people you love. Make sure everyone gets involved with the dishes too!!

Enjoy a long, lazy lunch somewhere lovely

When lunch is usually on-the-go or at your desk during the work week, it can be nice to take the opportunity to enjoy a long, lazy lunch, somewhere special on a “weekday”. Try somewhere that follows a farm-to-table philosophy, with all the ingredients coming from organic, ethical farms and suppliers.

Head to the beach

It may seem like the full on holidays were only yesterday – well that is because they pretty much were! It doesn’t mean that you can’t head off to the beach. Either locally here in Auckland or somewhere out of town! We are blessed with so many gorgeous spots within such short distances from the city. Don’t forget that! Lap up what we have on our doorstep and go exploring.

However you end up spending your days off, we hope it’s in the company of the people you love, enjoying delicious, wholesome food! We can’t think of a better way to spend a holiday!

New Year, Happy Me!

New Year, Happy Me!

A new year always brings with it a heart for change, to do better, to be better. Whether you’re a new year resolutions kind of person, or not, we all want to make the most of the 365 days ahead.

For some, it’s exciting, having the opportunity to start afresh, but for many of us, back in the office, wading through more than 365 emails, reluctantly eating our kale and quinoa salad, exhausted from our first (and probably last) 5am spinning class, it’s easy to feel deflated, depressed, and already defeated. And it’s only the first week of work.

So this year, change it up. Make the list of things you probably should do in your life; lose weight, exercise more, eat less sugar, be nice to the in-laws…and then make another list.

A list of the things that make you genuinely happy. Things you look forward to, that excite you and inspire you. Perhaps it’s playing soccer with your son, or reading romance novels. Maybe it’s catching up with old friends, or trying new recipes. Write down all the things that put the biggest smile on your face, that make you feel good about yourself and the world around you. And do more of that.

With this in mind, we asked a few people, what do they want to do more of this year?

Really enjoy and appreciate time with family and friends. I would love to go on more outdoor adventures and laugh more with my family. Even if it is just entering into the world of my two children’s imaginations and searching out all the “dinosaurs” in our garden with them.” – Brad

“Get more musical instruments to increase the size of our church band and so that I can learn and improve more on those instruments that I’m not too familiar with.” – Emmanuel

“Work more on building our home. I’m excited for my family and I to have a better home to live in.” – Morgan

“Mince Pies! Jokes, well kind of. Why can’t it be Christmas everyday… maybe every weekend to start. I want to spend more time drinking and eating and laughing with family and friends, not just on special occasions. Start making our way towards the “Italian family lunchtime gathering” style and way of life. Maybe even try and come home for lunch or a really early dinner every day with my family.” – Ryan

“Do more yoga, cook meals together with my family, and meet new people!” – Kerry

So at the end of the day, we only have one new year’s resolution. Do more of what makes you genuinely happy. That’s it. And the rest of those resolutions? There’s always next year!