Updated:
Original:

Grocery wars get ugly: Hy-Vee now offers discounts on misshapen fruit and veg

Discounts of up to 30 percent on produce that doesn't conform to society's expectations of beauty.
Author:

Hy-Vee is making shoppers think twice before discarding misshapen fruit and vegetables from now on, by offering discounts on so-called "ugly" produce.

In an attempt to combat the country's food waste issue (and make a few bucks at the same time, no doubt), the Iowa-based grocery chain's stores will feature "cosmetically challenged" fruit and vegetables that can be found in bins named "Misfits."

In an announcement this week, the chain says it will have four to six "Misfit" fruit and veg to choose from every week, which will carry discounts of around 30 percent compared to the produce that conforms to society's expectations of beauty.

Peppers, cucumbers, squash, apples, mandarins and tomatoes have been among the misshapen food to appear in stores so far.

Citing United Nations data that estimates 20-40 percent of produce harvested each year is thrown away because it doesn't meet "sizing standards" for store shelves, Hy-Vee hopes to challenge perceptions and educate consumers about waste, as well as giving farmers a new outlet to sell so-called ugly produce.

"The beauty of this program is that the produce tastes the same and is of the same high quality, it just looks different. As the saying goes, you can’t judge a book by its cover. The same is true for Misfits fruits and vegetables," said John Griesenbrock, Hy-Vee’s vice president of produce/HealthMarkets.

"As a company with several focused environmental efforts, we feel it’s our responsibility to help educate consumers and dispel any misperceptions about produce that is not cosmetically perfect."

Hy-Vee is one of the newest entrants to the Twin Cities grocery market, with five stores already open (in New Hope, Eagan, Brooklyn Park, Brooklyn Park and Oakdale) and according to the Business Journal, nine more in the pipeline as it pursues an aggressive strategy.

Next Up

Knuth - Nezhad - side by side

Frey challengers Knuth, Nezhad agree to rank each other 2nd

They're urging supporters to do the same on Nov. 2.

Jerome Horton - Sherburne Co. Jail - CROP

Charges: Man lied to buy gun later used by St. Paul mass shooting suspect

He's accused of making false statements during the purchase of a firearm.

Screen Shot 2021-06-04 at 6.30.24 AM

BCA releases investigative file in Winston Smith's shooting death

The file contains 1,000 pages of documents, hundreds of photos and dozens of audio files.

Slice

Fire at Mpls. pizza joint weeks after opening, owners suspect arson

The owners arrived at work Tuesday to find the building on fire.

vaccine, covid

New COVID charts show hospitalization, death rates based on vaccine status

The unvaccinated are far more likely than the fully vaccinated to become hospitalized or die.

Flickr - Superior National Forest Boundary Waters

White House begins process to ban new mining near BWCAW

The stated goal is to protect the "unique natural wonder" of the BWCAW.

Autumn Merrick, Autumn Rose Merrick

Man charged in shootout, crash that killed 18-year-old on scooter

Autumn Rose Merrick was with a friend near the Holiday gas station.

D Quagon - DOC photo

DOC searching for convicted sex offender who has gone on the run

The recently released man removed his GPS monitoring device.

Related

Grocery wars get ugly: Hy-Vee now offers discounts on misshapen fruit and veg

Discounts of up to 30 percent on produce that doesn't conform to society's expectations of beauty.

Next for Hy-Vee in Minnesota, big convenience stores

The grocery chain looks to challenge gas station stores

Amazon Prime members will get discounts at Whole Foods

The discounts will be rolled out this summer.

The vegan restaurant that closed because it was so popular is now open again

J. Selby's initially opened expecting 250-300 customers a day. They got 700-800.

The vegan restaurant that closed because it was so popular is now open again

J. Selby's initially opened expecting 250-300 customers a day. They got 700-800.

Here's why MN now has thousands more small bakeries and pickling businesses

A rule change in 2015 has opened the door for thousands of home-based food entrepreneurs.