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Imperfect Produce bringing vegetable delivery service to Northwest Indiana

Imperfect Produce will launched in Northwest Indiana on Jan. 14.

San Francisco-based Imperfect Produce plans to launch its subscription service for "ugly" fruits and vegetables in Northwest Indiana.

The company will start selling Region subscribers boxes of malformed produce that otherwise would have gone to waste on Jan. 14.

"One in five fruits and vegetables grown in the U.S. don’t meet the strict cosmetic standards of grocery stores, usually causing them to go to waste on the farm," the company said in a press release. "The curvy carrot, the miniature cherry and the oddly-shaped orange are all delicious and nutritious but are often left to rot in fields or sent to the local landfill. Imperfect is on a social mission to eliminate food waste, help farmers benefit from a full harvest and make healthy fruits and vegetables more accessible and affordable."

The three-year-old company said it already has recovered more than 26 million pounds of produce across the United States.

Founders Ben Simon, Ben Chesler and Aleks Strub started the company in 2015 after Simon's Food Recovery Network nonprofit, aimed at reducing waste in college cafeterias, spread from the University of Maryland to more than 180 university campuses across the country.

Imperfect Produce was not immediately available everywhere nationally because it tries to source its produce from nearby farms in each market. It is currently only available in the San Francisco area, Los Angeles, Portland, Seattle, Milwaukee, Indianapolis and Chicago.

Customers can get boxes of fruit, vegetables or a combination of the two delivered to their homes each week. Organic produce is also available. For more information, visit www.imperfectproduce.com.

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.