For anyone who's never come across a veg box before, it's basically exactly what it sounds like: a box full of vegetables. Veg box schemes have really taken off over the past decade or so, as an incredibly convenient way to get fresh produce delivered to your door, usually direct from the farm it grew on.
Most schemes are organic, and 'ethical' in all sorts of ways; they cut down on transport emissions and packaging waste, and ensure a fair price to the producers. So basically you get extra flavour with less guilt and no hassle, plus the satisfaction of sticking up two fingers to mass supermarkets chains.
A veg box is also a great way to try out ingredients you wouldn't usually buy. You never quite know what you'll get, as it all depends on the season and what's ready (though usually you can specify if there's anything you'd rather not receive). Often you get suggested recipes with your box or on the website.
Most schemes are also very flexible, available in a range of sizes and combinations – and you can choose to order a box as often or not as you wish, or add any extras you particularly fancy.
The scheme you're most likely to have heard of in London is Riverford Organic. From the humble beginnings of Guy Watson selling vegetables to friends from his Devon farm, the business now delivers 47,000 boxes every week, in partnership with other organic farms around the UK. Boxes come in several different sizes, as well as a seasonal box, favourites (a selection of the most popular vegetables), salad boxes and fruit, either combined with veg or on its own. You can even order a fruit box for your workplace, or while you're at it, a meat box. In fact Riverford delivers pretty much everything you could want: dairy, drinks, treats, fresh bread and deli supplies.
Riverford sounds hard to beat, but it's certainly not the only option. Abel & Cole offers a similar range, including 'gourmet' veg boxes for those who prefer only the best varieties. Yorkshire-based Farmaround also serves London, and has some interesting options, including a 'Mediterranean module', 'Green module' and 'Juicing module'.