At the beginning of 2017, my partner and I decided to try one of the prepared home meal box services. We picked Blue Apron as our choice, as they offered the best sign-up discount. The system works really well in terms of choosing your meals 1-2 weeks in advance, and they claimed that their ingredients were truly seasonal, provided by local farmers.
Over a course of 3 months, however, we had a few not so pleasant meals, mostly with regards to the fish as well as other proteins that tasted either like over-boiled eggs (dry and stinky) or sour shark (a cured, rubbery, Icelandic shark that is positively un-chewable). So, we decided to try another service.

A friend who is a foodie referred us to Sun Basket, based out of California, and after doing some research, we decided to give it a try. It’s the same concept as Blue Apron, but all the ingredients are organic (if possible) and seasonal. So far, it has been good, and I much more prefer Sun Basket over the others we have tried. No more gagging over bad poultry or Tilapia as Sun Basket won’t provide ingredients that aren’t in season 🙂

The disappointments (but not too bad):
The people at Sun Basket promote that their packaging is recyclable and it is, but trash is trash. I wish they’d find a way to combine some of the ingredients in fewer bags to eliminate some of the tubs and plastic. It’s terrible tossing out all that paper and plastic, including an outer paper bag and several tiny Ziploc bags that cannot be easily reused. That said, my partner and I love the little plastic tubs, which we reuse constantly 😉
Also, on a few occasions, the recipes have been drastically off in terms of cooking time, resulting in either undercooked rice or rock-hard, inedible sweet potatoes 🙁 Basically a waste of meal!

Have you ever been in a store and seen someone get arrested and escorted out in handcuffs by the police? I’ve seen it a few times and each time, I think, “You idiot, didn’t you see all the cameras watching over us?” Plus, most products have built in metal detector which sends off a signal if it’s not scanned at the cash register.

Where am I going with this? Well, having been in the creative service industry for over 20 years, we can’t really escort our clients out in handcuffs to the nearest police precinct if they walk away without paying. I understand walking away if a service provider doesn’t deliver as promised in the contract or if the drinks and food that were ordered weren’t delivered. But if that happens, it needs to be pointed out and discussed. But in so many cases, especially in the creative service industry, clients walk away way with fully delivered work that they then use to promote and sell their products but refuse to pay the agents that helped them get there. I’m talking about photographers, copywriters, illustrators, web developers, media placement companies, PR agents, and the list goes on. I’m so sick of hearing this: “Well, we ran out of funds,” only to learn that the CEO received a nice bonus and the company bought a private jet!!!

The fix: Don’t hire a creative and/or branding team if you think that your wife, sister, husband, brother, old teammates, sorority sisters, fraternity brothers, or any other relatives and friends can do a better job. If you’re serious, set a budget aside for the task at hand and research agencies that serve companies with similar budgets. Set aside that budget and make sure you don’t spend the $$ on things to impress the board, your clients, or on lavish Christmas parties. If you cheat anyone out of money, it will eventually catch up with you.

Take it or leave it!!