Sunday, March 24, 2013

Things I like to order on Azure Standard - Part 1

I first discovered Azure Standard almost 4 years ago. The first month, I ordered through a local drop point. By the second month, I had started my own drop point, and have had a monthly order and delivery for our group ever since.

About two years ago, my drop point had grown so large that I asked one of my members to split off and start her own group with the members that were closer to her. Now, it seems as if we are back to that point again where we need to split because we are outgrowing my driveway - this month's delivery for our group totaled 1700 lbs of organic, wholesome goodness to the tune of $3200.

I am not surprised how quickly shopping through Azure Standard is growing in popularity. For one, there is the convenience of grocery shopping online, anytime, in your nightgown if you wish, without distractions from the kids, with all the time necessary to compare prices and tweak the order to fit the budget. Score!

Then, the delivery - even though we take items off the end of the truck ourselves, and distribute them by last name in my driveway, that is still a lot faster and easier than dragging the kids through the store and putting items into a shopping cart. Especially for me, who has everything delivered to my front door!

Beyond that, the experience as a whole is much more social than grocery shopping ever will be: We see what others are ordering, share our experiences, split large bulk orders, and chat and catch up - all while the kids are happily playing together and the adults work the co-op.

The prices, of course, are what initially draw many to order from Azure. I like to say it's like an online Whole Foods as far as availability of items, with a smaller price tag.

What's the downside, you may wonder? As for my drop point, it's zero customer service! Drop point managers like myself are not recompensed in any way, shape or form (beyond the satisfaction of knowing that we are helping others eat better). So people who are only there to freeload, show up late and not help unload and distribute, or expect me to store and refrigerate their goods until they have a convenient time to pick them up as if I were a for-profit store, quickly get the boot from our group. My driveway is not some sort of budget Whole Foods - and I make that clear to those who think otherwise.

As it stands, I would say we spend about 50% of our grocery budget on Azure, about 30% locally on dairy, meat and produce, and about 20% at Trader Joe's and Whole Foods to round out the odds and ends I need throughout the month.

I have often been asked about what I like to order from Azure. Over the course of the next few weeks, I will blog here and there about my favorite products. Really, though, I have yet to order anything I don't love.

Stay tuned for part 2! :)


  1. Azure just expanded its delivery routes to include Ohio. We will be getting our first delivery in a few weeks!

  2. Random comment, sorry, but I just saw that the Duggar's are considering adoption. Is adoption something you & your husband would be open to?

  3. Why is everybody so keen on knowing whether the Andersons want to adopt. Why should they? Don't they have enough kids on their own? Leave adoption to the childless people, there are plenty of them.

  4. People are probably asking about adoption because they are 1. curious, and 2. possibly more comfortable discussing the issue online because topics like adoption can be taboo in their own personal face-to-face communities.

    When responding to someone's question, I always find it helpful to determine their intent, as well as the worded question. Does it come from a place of genuine inquiry, or to bother, or even cause malice? Anonymous commenter #1's questions seems rather innocent, so why react negatively?

    Adoption is a wonderful action that helps repair some of the damage that has been done to our fellow brothers/sisters/children. Until every adoptable child is placed in a loving home, I think it is the responsibility of every adult and family to consider whether or not they are able to open their home to one or more in need. History has shown us that all types of families create healthy adoption homes, not just the childless. A sad reality is that there is still taboo in adoption because they might not be considered "real" children. Conversation to overcome taboos and inconsistencies, in order to help develop love, understanding, and compassion, seems a good thing.

    Oh, and Azure Standard is wonderful! I was directed here through a Google search of the company to see how my food would be delivered. I am so excited to finally be able to purchase bulk grains at low prices.

    Wonderful and supportive blog too. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Great post. My sister and I also use Azure Standard and love using this type of shopping. Your picture reminds me of how our drop looks. Lots of boxes and kids - but ours is at a big truck stop. My sister wrote about shopping with Azure this week on our blog:

  6. Hi,
    We currently order from Azure but changes are in the future for the drop and I would like to start my own drop. How did you grow your group and do you have any other recommendations?


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