frequently asked questions

 

What is Misfits Market?

It's a subscription box of sometimes funny-looking, always delicious produce, designed to break the cycle of food waste. Think of us like an online grocery store, except one that specializes in rescuing food that is unnecessarily thrown away. We source high-quality organic produce that has a few quirks—onions that are too small, potatoes that are shaped like your favorite celebrity, and carrots that fell in love and got twisted together. It may sound like a joke, but billions of pounds of this fresh and delicious food is tossed each year because grocery stores only want "perfect" foods on their shelves. We step in and buy this food from hundreds of farms across the country and bring them to your doorstep, saving you money and helping you save the world. 

What makes a piece of food a misfit, and why does it look weird?

A common misconception is that fruits and vegetables only look strange if something is wrong with them or they are genetically modified (GMO). Quite the opposite: All-natural produce is apt to look funkier than the picture-perfect kind that is engineered in a lab. Unfortunately, misfit fruits and vegetables are often rejected by grocery stores and supermarkets due to natural imperfections or variations in size. A watermelon that has its weight distributed oddly may develop harmless scarring. Carrots grow into each other and look twisted. Peppers get blemishes from the ground. Apples fall and get bruised. All are perfectly normal, nutritious and tasty, and they shouldn’t be discarded. The produce we source may also be a misfit for reasons beyond an ugly appearance. Sometimes a farm’s customers may have over-ordered an item that they requested be prepped a certain way—e.g., just the root without the green—or they can no longer afford to pay for an order of normal produce. We’ll pick up the slack so that farmers still make money and nothing goes to waste.

Why should I use Misfits Market?

There are a few reasons. First, you’re helping the earth in a very powerful way. Global food waste generates 3.3 billion tons of carbon dioxide annually, making it one of the single biggest contributors to planet-harming emissions. Saving this produce can actually help save the world. Second, you can save big on your grocery bill. Misfits’ produce is up to 50% cheaper than grocery store prices, so the weekly savings add up fast. Third, you’re supporting local agriculture. By purchasing food that would otherwise go to waste, you’re letting regional farmers generate extra income. 

How does it work? 

Pretty simply. You order either a smaller Mischief Box or larger Madness Box of produce for 30-50% less than it would cost at your local grocery store. We fill up that box with our misfit fruits and veggies. You choose to receive a box either every week or every other week. 

Where do you deliver?

We currently deliver to all zip codes in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Delaware, but we’re growing quickly. If your state isn’t listed, join our wait list and you’ll be the first to know when we come to your area.  

How much food will I get in my box?

The core measurements of our boxes are the amount of people it feeds per week and the value/savings you can expect compared to grocery store prices. E.g., when there are less squash and potatoes but more baby greens or asparagus, you’ll get a lighter weight estimate but lose nothing in terms of value. We also list an approximate weight for each box on our product pages, but it’s just an estimate and it’s updated frequently for accuracy, as our inventory changes from week to week. (For the most current list of what we're offering this week, please click here.) Please note that our shipping partners use a different weight calculation entirely. The number that you’ll see on your shipping slip doesn’t reflect actual box weight. 

How do I know which box is right for me?

It depends largely on how often you cook. Our Madness box offers a larger quantity of the items in our Mischief box, as well as a few extra pieces that you won’t find in the smaller box. The weight of our boxes varies depending on what fruits and vegetables are in season, but you can generally plan on about enough food for 1-2 people for a week in our Mischief Box and enough for 4-5 people in our Madness Box. 

What types of produce are in the box?

Generally, it’s a very well-rounded group that varies by season. In fall and winter you can expect apples, potatoes, squash, sweet potatoes, broccoli, cabbage, citrus, lettuces/leafy greens, onions, and peppers, just to name a few. By spring you’ll see more berries and asparagus and summer is prime time for peaches and tomatoes. The surprise is part of the fun! For the most current list of what we're offering this week, please click here.

Is all of your produce organic?

Yes, we source our produce from certified organic farms and partners that provide us with non-GMO food. For more information on our sourcing methods, check out Our Sourcing Philosophy

Where do you source your produce?

The majority of our produce is sourced from farms in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, though we are partnering with additional farms on the East Coast as our service area expands. As we hit the winter months, we may also include fruit (e.g., citrus and avocados) and greens from outside the region to offer more variety in your box. We see food waste throughout the system, so any time we come across high-quality, responsibly-sourced food that’s about to be discarded, we’ll rescue it and use it to diversify your box. 

How do I place my order? How long will it take to get to me?

First, you can choose your ideal size and delivery option, whether it’s a one-time purchase or a weekly/bi-weekly subscription. You can also choose which day of the week you'd like to have it delivered. Once your first order is placed, you’ll get a confirmation email that we’ve received your order. Your first box will ship out within 4-5 business days of ordering and will be delivered within 1-2 days of being shipped. You’ll receive a shipping email with tracking information the night before it’s ready to go out, so don't worry if you haven't heard anything for up to a week after placing your order. After that, if you’ve chosen a subscription, your order will come the following week or two weeks (depending on whether you've chosen weekly or bi-weekly deliveries) on your preferred delivery day. You can always log into your Misfits account to see the status of your order or email us at contact@misfitsmarket.com with specific questions. 

Who delivers the package and how can I track it?

We use either our own network of drivers or a third-party shipping/logistics provider to bring your Misfits Market box to your door. You can track it with the number given in the shipping confirmation email you'll receive the night before your box is scheduled to be delivered. You do not need to sign for your box. The driver will generally ring the doorbell and then leave the box at your doorstep. If you have specific instructions for delivery, please contact the shipping service (UPS or FedEx) when you receive your tracking number. We encourage all customers to sign up for FedEx's Delivery Manager or UPS’ My Choice, which allow you to specify exactly where you want your package left. You can also log into your Misfits account to see the status of your order or email us at contact@misfitsmarket.com with specific questions. 

Do you deliver to P.O. boxes?

Due to the perishable nature of our produce as well as the limited receiving hours at U.S.P.S. offices, shipping to P.O. boxes is strongly discouraged at this time. We suggest shipping to your home or work, or to a friend or neighbor's address whenever possible. 

What days of the week do you deliver?

We deliver Tuesday through Saturday each week (currently, Tuesday deliveries are reserved for longtime subscribers). You can choose your preferred delivery day in your cart before checkout. If you need to change your delivery day, simply log into your account and, under Edit Delivery Day on the right-hand side, choose the best day for you. We encourage all subscription customers to select a delivery day preference so we can make sure you receive your box on the same day each week and you can plan ahead. If you haven't chosen a delivery day, we will deliver any time within that Tuesday-Saturday weekly delivery window; you will still get that shipping email the night before to let you know when it's on its way. 

How much is shipping?

Shipping is a flat rate of $4.50 to all locations in our delivery area for either size of our boxes.

What forms of payment do you accept?

We accept all major credit cards for all online purchases as well as Google Pay and PayPal for one-time orders.

Do you accept SNAP/EBT?

We currently do not, but we are actively looking into adding that payment method on through a pilot program. To be notified when this launches, please sign up for our email newsletter.

When will you charge me for a subscription? 

Subscription orders are typically charged on Mondays at 12 a.m. prior to deliveries that week (Tuesday through Saturday). If you have any changes to make to your subscription, we kindly ask that you make them on the Sunday prior to your delivery before you're charged. 

Can I choose what's in my box?

Customization is an awesome feature and one that we hope to introduce down the road. In the meantime, our primary mission is to rescue a wide variety of top-quality produce and make it more accessible to everyone. That said, many customers find the surprise and delight of the mix is part of the fun. We often hear that experimenting with new foods helps customers become even more creative in the kitchen. When they come across something that’s not their favorite, they usually give it to a friend, family member or co-worker. 

I have allergies. Can you omit certain items from my box?

We do our best to take severe food allergies and critical health restrictions into account. Once you’ve placed your order, please send us an email at contact@misfitsmarket.com with your order number and your restrictions so we can make a note for the order underway as well as all future orders. 

Can I skip a subscription delivery?

If you’re traveling or need to take a week off, it’s easy to skip future orders. Simply log into your account and click Manage Subscriptions on the right side menu, then click on Delivery schedule on the left side menu. Find the delivery you don’t want, then click on Skip. You can resume deliveries for any skipped dates by clicking Unskip.

How can I change the frequency of my subscription?

Simply log into your account, click Manage Subscriptions, then click Edit on the far righthand side. Next, click on the link that says Change delivery schedule. Click on the number in the sentence Change 1 Weeks if you have weekly delivery, or Change 2 Weeks if it's bi-weekly. You'll see there's a drop down where you can choose the other. Select the number you want and hit Save. 

Where can I find a list of your farms?

We have a growing list of partners but they're not necessarily regular, as we might go weeks without tapping into a source if they have low inventory for some time. (That’s part of the fun/unpredictability of misfit food rescue!) But, in general, we source from farms, farmers’ cooperatives and other distributors of organic food located in Pennsylvania and NJ, though we’ll have new ones in NY coming online shortly. If you have some favorite farms you’d suggest we connect with, we’d love any recommendations you can share with us at contact@misfitsmarket.com

How are you different from a CSA?

CSAs typically serve only a small circle of customers at certain times of the year because very few are year-round, and usually require you to pick up at a common location. Misfits Market actually buys from the farmers’ co-ops that run these CSAs and delivers straight to your door. The cooperatives that are behind regional CSAs have been incredibly supportive because we're able to take large quantities of product that would otherwise sit around and go unsold. For many CSA customers, Misfits is complement to their service in the months they are not using CSAs.

How are you different from other ugly produce delivery services?

We’re dedicated to offering the simplest, most affordable way for everyone to access delicious fruits and vegetables. While other businesses have nobly rescued tons of wasted food, few have prioritized delivering it to all Americans who want affordable produce. Misfits Market’s groundbreaking approach allows us to serve both cities and rural areas that others neglect. And whereas other companies buy from massive commercial farms, we work with small and mid-size regional farms that typically lack the infrastructure to sell or donate ugly produce before it goes bad. We also actively support farmers’ cooperatives that may struggle to make ends meet.

Is your packaging eco friendly?

We pride ourselves in offering some of the most forward-thinking packaging on the market. We recently launched eco-friendly packaging in our boxes. Our insulation has a cornstarch base, making it fully home compostable. Simply cut the recyclable green film exterior (recycle with other #4 plastics) and remove the insulating panels. You can then dissolve the panels under hot water in your sink in about 60 seconds, submerge them in a bucket of water to dissolve overnight (the resulting solution makes great plant food!), burn them, or compost them. We also use BioBags, which are fully compostable via municipal/industrial composting services, in lieu of plastic produce bags to wrap our food. Finally, our boxes are made from recycled cardboard and are recyclable themselves. 

Why do you use bags to contain the produce?

We try to minimize the use of bags, however, in some instances it’s necessary to protect more sensitive items. When they’re packed more compactly together, they’re more likely to be protected. If the food is loose, it often gets banged around during transit until it’s inedible, which is at odds with our mission. We’ll do our best to make sure you can reuse as many bags as you can, or better yet, not use any bags when possible. 

Will the contents of my box freeze in transit?

The eco-friendly packaging inside our boxes not only protects the produce but also insulates it from the cold. We're aware, though, that Northeastern winters can be extreme, so we'd advise you to plan to take your box inside shortly after delivery. Please email us at contact@misfitsmarket.com if you believe that any of your produce may have suffered from exposure to freezing temperatures in transit. 

Do you have a referral program?

Yes, our referral program rewards Misfits Market subscribers for spreading the word about our produce. It's free to join and simple to use. Each time a new customer uses your referral code at checkout, they'll get a special offer that's good for their first box, and you'll get a reward you can apply to your next subscription order. Rewards change from time to time; currently, each person you refer to Misfits Market who purchases will get 25% off their first box and you'll get 25% your next subscription box. For complete information about the program, click here.  

Do you sell gift cards?

Yes, we offer two convenient options: 1) A one-time Mischief box that's delivered directly to your giftee within 4-5 business days of ordering; or 2) A gift card that you can send to your giftee at any time that they can redeem for a one-time Mischief box on their schedule. Click here to shop Misfits gifts. 

Why doesn't misfit produce go directly to charities?

Only a small percentage of the farms we work with have the infrastructure necessary to send produce to food banks on a weekly basis. The volume is simply too large. We see our Misfits boxes as a more scalable solution to rescuing food and getting it to people who may not otherwise be able to afford high-quality produce. We’re also launching a regular donation program with two Philadelphia food banks so that a large amount of produce goes back to local hunger organizations.

I can't accept packages at home. Do you have any pickup spots?

We do not currently have any pickup locations, but we can deliver to any address that FedEx and UPS can access. For customers who can’t receive home delivery, we suggest delivering it to your workplace if you’re able to transport it home easily or asking a friend or neighbor with a stable delivery address to let you deliver it to their home

How can I cancel a subscription?

Hopefully, you love us so much that you’ll never want to cancel. Realistically, we know things come up. Canceling is easy. You can log into your portal on our site and cancel your subscription at any time with no penalty or fees. Simply log into your account and click Manage Subscriptions on the right side menu. Find the subscription you would like to cancel, then click the Cancel link. (On mobile, keep scrolling to the right to get to the Cancel link.) You can also skip your box for specific weeks if you are traveling or just need a break. 

Got additional questions? Email us at contact@misfitsmarket.com!