The Best Places to Buy in Season Fruit & Veg
THE BEST PLACES TO BUY IN SEASON FRUIT & VEG
Top image: SW Fruit & Veg, Salad & Green Box.
Words: Imogen Willis
As we near the end of the summer, the hard work of the colder months results in gardens and allotments overflowing with ripe fruit and vegetables. The glut of produce includes everything from tomatoes and courgettes, to cherries, raspberries and in early September, Blackberries. However, unless you are lucky enough to have this growing space – or a green fingered knack with plants – it’s hard to know where to source seasonal fruit and veg of the same quality. With this in mind, here are a selection of the best greengrocers and veg box delivery services in South West London and Surrey full of fruit and vegetables so good that it will make you turn your back on supermarket produce forever.
Images: SW Fruit & Veg box delivery; SW Fruit & Veg Box
SW FRUIT & VEG
Delivers to all SW postcodes as well as Twickenham and Kingston postcodes.
If you are looking for a veg box scheme that makes it easier for you to eat healthily and supports a good cause, SW Fruit & Veg is the answer. Started at the beginning of the first lockdown by two brothers, helping to provide friends and family with fresh produce and other essential items not available in the supermarkets out of their garage, SW Fruit & Veg has expanded to supply food to homes across South West London. In response to the growing needs of their community they have also set up a ‘Donate a Box’ scheme, working with local charities to distribute their fresh food boxes to elderly and vulnerable people in the local community every week. You can visit their website to either order or donate one of three boxes: The Fruit & Veg Box, The Salad & Green Box and The Fruit Bowl to which you can add cupboard essentials such as flour, rice, pasta, eggs and bread, or snacks including freshly made juices and smoothies. The fruit and veg included in the box is sourced direct from New Covent Garden Market, and is both seasonal and ripened to perfection so you will enjoy every piece either cooked or raw, whilst knowing that no surplus goes to waste.
Images: Chegworth Valley Apple and Plum fruit juice; Brambletye red gooseberries and raspberries.
LONDON FARMERS’ MARKETS
South West London markets include Wimbledon, Balham and Twickenham.
Bringing fresh produce from the rolling hills of the British countryside to London, the London Farmers’ Markets each Saturday morning are a wonderful place to stock up on seasonal fruit and veg from a range of different suppliers. Check out Wimbledon Farmers Market for sun ripened tomatoes fresh from The Isle of Wight at The Tomato Stall and Chegworth Valley’s stand for apples and pears fresh from the Kent countryside alongside delicious hand-pressed fruit juices. Or head to Balham for delicious fruit from Brambletye Fruit Farm, which uses biodynamic farming principles to ensure nutritionally rich soil and sustainable production of fruit. Try apples from their orchard or strawberries, currants, blueberries, blackberries, gooseberries and pears when they are in season.
SUTTON COMMUNITY FARM
Overlooking the London city skyline, this 7 acre site is a community-owned farm space where volunteers grow and harvest fruit and vegetables, using organic farming techniques. Started in 2010 in response to a need in the local community for access to healthy and fresh food, alongside a desire for a community space to increase physical and mental wellbeing, Sutton Community Farm now has over 3000 volunteers and has offered countless benefits to the local community and beyond through its not-for-profit Veg Box scheme. Volunteers tend to the fields during the week and learn about producing crops organically, before helping to harvest crops for their fruit and veg boxes, delivered to homes across Surrey and SW London every Thursday and Friday. You can find out what they are growing, and what boxes contain each month on their website, alongside details of how to order a veg box. This is definitely a win-win as you’re giving back to the community and eating your greens – what’s not to like!
Images: Bayley & Sage displays.
BAYLEY & SAGE
Wimbledon Village, Parsons Green, Fulham Road, Old York Road, Northcote Road and Chelsea.
Bayley & Sage first opened its doors in Wimbledon Village in 1997 offering a selection of fresh produce and deli essentials to locals. Now with stores across South West London and a new store in Belgravia, their vision and horizons have expanded with the same belief at their core – that fresh food is a vital part of a happy and healthy lifestyle. Fresh produce is sourced from New Covent Garden and beyond, with deliveries of fruit and veg from markets in Milan and Rungis, just outside of Paris. They pride themselves on sourcing in season, high quality produce, presented beautifully in their stores, with a ‘This Month’ section on their website where you can discover what seasonal crops are available before you visit. Beyond fruit and veg, they also have a wonderful selection of cheeses, charcuterie, baked goods, and flowers, presented in their wonderful boutique style, making this a wonderful place to peruse, or to pick up artisanal ingredients for a summer picnic.
Order online for delivery to London postcodes.
Out of New Covent Garden Market, All Greens traditionally supplied top hotels and restaurants with fresh and seasonal fruit and vegetables. However, at the beginning of the pandemic they turned their attention to home delivery boxes full of the best fresh ingredients, alongside harder to come by store cupboard favourites such as bread flour and freshly ground coffee and haven’t looked back since. The produce is market-fresh and delivers to South West London postcodes within 1-2 days. Their seasonal family fruit and veg box is full of delicious offerings changing with the season, or there are a selection of other boxes based on your tastes, such as the Exotic Fruit Box, Berry Plus Box or the Big Family Fruit & Vegetable Box – a great one for catering for hungry teens.
Images: Noel’s Farm Shop apples and carrots.
NOEL’S FARM SHOP
Sutton Green Garden Centre, Woking
Located in Sutton Green Garden Centre and online, Noel’s Farm Shop offers a large variety of fruit and vegetables direct from the farm and polytunnels behind the shop, alongside Surrey eggs, freshly made bread, honey, store cupboard essentials and free-range meat and dairy. For those looking to shop sustainably this is a fantastic option, there are a wide range of package free products and a zero-waste section where you can bring your own containers to be refilled. Fruit and vegetables are only available when in season and can be purchased in person or through the website. Make sure to keep your eyes peeled for heat-loving crops harvested in late August and September such as courgettes, tomatoes, blackberries, raspberries and plums.
Owners Emma and Leigh had 30 years’ experience between them in the floristry industry delivering beautiful blooms to their clients, when they decided to branch out to food delivery and set up Magnificent Marrow. Named after a memorable childhood moment of Emma’s when her green fingered mum gave her a home-grown marrow to take into the school harvest festival, Emma and Leigh have made freshly harvested produce the centre of their business. Whether you are looking for a bouquet to brighten up your home, or you’re hoping to get in your five a day, pop into their shop next to Raynes Park station for a delicious spread of seasonal fruit and vegetables fresh from New Covent Garden Market, or order through their website for home delivery. They have a fantastic selection of boxes and bags to choose from, including a Seasonal Fruit Bag, Sunday Lunch Box for a dinner with all the trimmings, and an Immune Booster Bag full of nutrient rich fruits. Also explore their boxes of August’s finest heritage tomatoes, and strings of garlics the envy of any French market. On their website they also have bakery, cheesemonger, butcher, fishmonger and deli full of fresh items if you need any extra ingredients for recipes.
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