Do you have any opinions on the concept of food/recipe boxes? It will not surprise you that I do.

I’ve been disturbed by some television advertisements for a company called HelloFresh. It’s something of a high end food home delivery service, but a lot more expensive than Sainsburys or Asda.

Here’s the deal. They will kindly supply you with all the ingredients to make a meal, and even supply you with a recipe card. What you do is a bit of prep work, and getting cooking.

The idea broke cover about 10 years ago in Sweden, a country I had always regarded as sensible. There are lots of these companies about now, surprisingly. Some wag dubbed them ‘Meals on wheels for the wholefoods set.’ They’re supposed to make sure that you get foods at the height of their dew-picked organic or sustainable freshness, so all the palaeos and clean eaters are jumping for joy.

Whoa, easy tiger. If, as you can, buy a box with a week’s worth of provisions in it, by day 7 they’re not going to be that fresh are they? Plus they’ve had to be transported beforehand to a storage and distribution centre (just as food in your local shop or greengrocer have). The only way to make sure your vegetables are really fresh is to grow and pick your own.

The target market is one I wasn’t sure about, but one Peta Bee (crazy name, crazy gal) set me straight. The appeal is to the millennials brought up on television rockstar chefs and farmers’ markets.

I still didn’t get it, but then Ms Bee fessed up. The italics are mine.

‘We want the freshest, organically farmed produce, but we just can’t be bothered to shop for it. If we can order the means create an Instagram-worth dish that can be passed off as our own creation, who’s to argue?’

Turn this into basic English, and what she’s saying is she’s a shiftless idler, who is prepared to mislead in the interests of advancement on social media, even planning her meals on the basis of how photogenic they are. That’s a fine example to set for your children, isn’t it?

I mentioned this is not a cheap way of doing your social climbing. Just under 25 smackers will get you two vegetarian meals for two people. At those sorts of prices you’d be better of risking the local takeaway. Blimey, even in my local CoOp, not noted for its low prices, I could get change from a tenner for two weeks’ worth of nosh.

The global market for recipe boxes currently stands at £700+ million. That’s a good measure of how bloody bone idle and image-obsessed some people have become.

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