Frequently Asked Questions
Please note – all temporary changes to the below information are currently listed on our COVID-19 UPDATE PAGE.
Does CERES Fair Food deliver to me?
We deliver to households right across Melbourne, five days a week. Use our postcode finder to see if we deliver in your area, and how frequently. We offer free delivery to our 70+ food hosts or we can deliver your goodies straight to your door.
Can I choose my fruit and veg?
Sure! You don’t have to buy one of our set boxes just choose whatever you like from our fruit and veg section.
Alternatively, we can make the decision-making easy with our great value set boxes. You can check what you’ll get in each box on the “What’s in the Box page” and add any additional items to your cart. Many customers like to order a simple box of staples and add any favourite fruit and veg plus groceries to that. Do what works for you!
Can I return my cardboard box?
Yes, we use them again and again! Though they are made from recycled cardboard, the production and recycling of our boxes is a major contributor to our carbon footprint. Simply flat pack them neatly and leave out for our drivers to collect next time they come to your place or to your food host. We will reuse them and when they’ve come to the end of their useful life we can recycle them for you. All our boxes, eskies and frozen water bottles are reused so please take care of them.
Do I have to order each week?
Not at all, you can order as frequently or as infrequently as you like. You can create a regular standing order, set up a future order (one for after the holidays, for instance), or just jump online whenever you need.
If you check the box for email or SMS reminders, we can help you remember to place an order as well as keep you in the loop of the upcoming week’s specials, and what’s going on with the team, our farmers and friends.
What time will my home delivery arrive?
Home deliveries happen between 9am-7pm. We’ll send you an SMS on delivery morning with a 3 hour delivery window.
At the moment you can’t choose your delivery time – though we are working on it.
You can view, edit or cancel your orders right up until 12noon (midday) the day before your delivery.
Your specific delivery instructions can be very helpful for our drivers. Do you have a side gate, key code or special request? Keep us up-to-date in your profile!
We reuse all our eskies, ice bottles and flat-packed Fair Food boxes. Simple leave them out where they were delivered and we’ll collect them with the next delivery.
If you live in an apartment or an area where leaving a home delivery order is tricky, consider collecting from a Food Host near you. Food Hosts orders enjoy free delivery, have collection windows usually between 4-9pm, and who knows … you might even meet a new friend, compost collaborator, or a helpful neighbourhood babysitter.
Is everything organic?
Everything we sell is certified organic unless clearly labelled. Occasionally if we can’t find a local certified organic product, we’ll choose locally made with good ingredients over certified organic, but you’ll always see this clearly written in the product description. We love supporting certified organic and biodynamic producers, as well as those who are just starting as young regenerative farmers.
Our dry goods and groceries selection comes from growers, makers and businesses who are as local as possible, and who we believe are making great choices for consumers – low waste, non-toxic products backed by ethical business standards we respect.
Check out our Buying Policy for all the things we consider before we sell.
Find out more about certified organic produce here.
How do I choose or change my Food Host?
We have over 70 food hosts all across this fine town, and they’re all total legends who lend us their verandahs and carports to make shopping easier, more affordable, and much more fun. Use our Food Host map to find your closest neighbour, then select your nearest and most convenient host when you set up your account. You can also change your preferred food host at any time. Perhaps it’s easiest to collect near your child’s school, or close to your work, or from a host that you pass as you travel home in the evening.
What if something happens and I can’t pick up my food host order?
Contact your Food Host directly to make an arrangement or let them know your situation. Check your most recent invoice for your host’s number – they are your point of contact out of business hours. The delivery window is set because the host is available during those hours so make yourself known and meet your neighbour.
If you have any problems you can’t sort out with the host, get in touch with us as soon as possible and we’ll do our best to resolve the issue.
Online shopping and I don’t get along – can I order over the phone?
If you are having trouble with online ordering, please feel free to call or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will happily assist you as best we can.
Can I pay without a credit or debit card?
You will need one of them to make an order – we have looked into other payment options for eftpos but for now we can only offer credit or debit card facilities.
Is there a minimum order?
Yes, to maintain our free delivery service to food hosts and ensure we run as sustainably as possible, we have a $40 minimum for all orders.
What if part of my order is missing or I’m not happy with my order?
Get in touch and we will sort you out as soon as we can. Your box is not packed by machines, that’s right… we are humans. In fact, we’re a small but diverse team offering many recently arrived migrants or people seeking asylum their first job in the country.
So call, email or use the query form direct from our website, and we’ll resolve any issues for you if they come up.
I’d like to send an order to a friend, is that possible?
Receiving a box of fresh organic food and groceries on your doorstep can a truly beautiful thing, and a great gift for a loved one. (Did we mention we deliver chocolate?). You can purchase a gift card or we can send a delivery to them ourselves.
Our gift cards are available for purchase here. Choose your desired amount and a pdf voucher with a coupon code will be emailed directly to you.
You can also gift a Fair Food delivery to a friend through your own account simply by temporarily changing the delivery address details, or set up a new account for them in their name but with your contact and payment details. (You may like to hand this over to them once they receive it and realise how awesome it is!).
We are more than happy to remove a printed invoice from a delivery, or tuck in a personalised message for your recipient – just get in touch with us and we’ll help you make a totally awesome gift for your loved one’s birthday / housewarming / time of need.
Will my fridge items stay nice and cold?
Yes we deliver all our refrigerated goods in our Fair Food eskies, which are packed IN our coolroom so they are extra cold, and stocked with reused frozen water bottles (from a social enterprise themselves – One Voice. One Voice do fantastic work helping our homeless community, check them out). They stay nice and cold.
If you’re picking up from a food host, all your refrigerated goods are in a communal esky – use the checklist on top to make sure you take everything you’ve ordered, but not someone else’s butter. And pop the lid back on securely when you’re done.
If you use our home delivery service, our drivers will collect the esky the next time they visit so leave it out for us wherever your order is dropped off.
How do I become a Food Host?
New food hosts are dictated by our logistics and our demand. If you’re interested to know if being a food host in your neighbourhood is a viable option, email us at email@example.com to discuss it with us. Provide details of your location and a brief description of why you would like to be a CERES Food Host and we will be in touch.
What happens if we can’t provide something you’ve ordered
We do understand that getting the groceries you ordered is important, so sometimes if we’re out of an item we’ll substitute it for something similar, for example, say you ordered Nicola potatoes we would substitute Dutch Creams or another potato variety. Just to be sure we’re not leaving you in the lurch. We will always notify you by email if we substitute the variety of an item.
If we are unable to provide something on the day of your order, this could be due to a farming emergency, a sudden weather event, a supplier difficulty or things beyond our control. We work with farmers and also buy to order so this sometimes means that things can change unexpectedly.
If an item becomes unavailable we will credit your Fair Food account for future purchases.
You don’t have to do anything, store credits are applied automatically next time you shop. Store credits on your account can be seen in your cart before you checkout, or viewed in your profile as an account balance. All monies going in and out can be seen in your Payment History.
We’ve chosen to use this process instead of refunding your bank account due to the external processing time required when dealing with different banking institutions – our store credits are instant and always ready for your next purchase.
Do CERES members receive discounts at CERES Fair Food?
CERES members receive discounts at many of the social enterprises on the Brunswick site, however we are unable to offer a further CERES member discount here at Fair Food. We are a proud social enterprise and work hard to provide an affordable organic delivery service where prices are kept as low as we can, and the savings are passed on to our customers each week. All – yes, 100%! – of our profits go back to support CERES work in teaching the next generation how we can truly love our planet.