Posts Tagged ‘Mindful Chef’

Mindful Chef Clipper Tea promotion

February 11, 2021

An Instagram promotion by Mindful Chef, directed to Instagram from Facebook.

mindfulchefuk  GIVEAWAY! 🎉 As a proud @bcorpuk we’re here for you, our people & the planet 🌍 so we’re thrilled to be teaming up with the world’s largest fairtrade tea brand @clipperteas 🤩 whose products are made with pure, natural ingredients 🌱 & a clear conscience 🙌 For your chance to win a bundle of quality teas ☕ & healthy recipes 😋 simply 👇

1️⃣ Like our post 💚
2️⃣ Tag a tea-loving friend 👯‍♀️
3️⃣ Follow @mindfulchefuk & @clipperteas 🤳
4️⃣ Share this post to your story for a bonus entry ✨

Winner announced on Friday 12th February – good luck! 🤞 #mindfulchef

No company or  individual who lays claim to being ethical has a presence on Instagram, least of all directs to Instagram.

  • owned by facebook
  • theft and abuse of personal data
  • pictures not visible on twitter
  • complicit in teen and pre-teen self harm and suicides

Overuse of tiny icons give the impression social media account handled by a teenager.

What we are seeing is a scam to generate yet more data for Instagram facebook, Mindful Chef and Clipper Tea.

  • like
  • tag
  • follow
  • share

Never tag friends, play quiz games survey, like, share. You are generating a data trail for Instagram and Facebook

The FairTrade scam. Pay a tiny premiums above commodity price. There is no incentive for farmers to improve quality, thus maintains farmers in poverty.

Direct trade, higher premiums paid for quality incentive for growers to improve, win win for everyone, consumers receive a higher quality, growers receive higher prices.

Always buy coffee from indie coffee shop or reputable coffee roastery.

A few years ago an expose of an Indian tea planation The Cost of a Cuppa, a BBC Radio 4 documentary looked at tea plantations in Assam, the appalling working and living conditions on the tea plantations, the child slave labour, whether the tea was supplied to some of the most expensive tea suppliers on the market or commodity tea it made no difference, the various designations meaningless, not worth the paper they are written on.

Tea workers in Assam earn 115 rupees a day, just over £1 ($1.50), well below the minimum wage (177 rupees in Assam). This is legal, a legacy of the British, part of their wage is paid for with housing, clean water, sanitation, food. There has been a small increase in wages since the programme was recorded.

The housing not fit for human habitation, no safe drinking water, no toilets, cesspits overflowing, roofs leaking. Plantation owners in India are obliged by law to provide and maintain ‘adequate’ houses, and sanitary toilets for workers.

The women pick the tea leaves, hard work, but not hazardous. In the fields the workmen are spraying hazardous pesticides, no protective gear, wearing only t-shirt, shorts and flip-flops. The chemical used deltamethrin, harmful possibly fatal if absorbed through the skin or inhaled. The local hospital sees 5–6 patients a week suffering from pesticide poisoning.

The plantations visited, Rainforest Alliance Certified. A marketing tool to sell tea to make middle class buyers of tea feel good.

Clipper Tea is owned by Royal Wessanen (now Ecotone), a massive Dutch food conglomerate. Ecotone owned by Vulture Capitalists PAI Partners (62%) and Charles Jobson (38%).

Companies owned include

  • Clipper tea
  • Kallø
  • Whole Earth

Whole Earth, like Mindful Chef, a greenwash name to hide the reality. Check out their peanut butter. No sugar, no salt, yeah, but check the list of ingredients, padded out with palm oil. For peanut butter choose Meridian or Suma from wholefood stores, local cooperatives and zero waste stores.

Mindful Chef, despite its prostrations of ethical, is owned by Nestle.

I am hard pushed to find anything ethical

Buy coffee from indie coffee shops or reputable coffee roasteries, chocolate from bean-to bar chocolate makers, tea from small specialist tea merchant’s.

The only giveaway we are seeing here is Mindful Chef customers giving away their personal data, for what, a chance to win a  few teabags. A crude data harvesting exercise by Mindful Chef and Clipper Tea, which also helps generate more data for Instagram and Facebook. 

Mindful Chef frozen meals DPD delivery

February 9, 2021

Last month a delivery by DPD of a Mindful Chef recipe box, dumped on back door first day of heavy rain during Storm Christoph. Not a good start, especially as order should have been delivered Sunday of the previous week.

Once again, a failure of delivery by DPD of a Mindful Chef delivery. Failed on first delivery this is only my second delivery and failed again.

Yesterday, a very long conversation with a helpful young fellow at Mindful. Part of that discussion was failure of previous delivery, dumped on back doorstep in the rain during storm Christoph, delivery driver lied where delivered.  To ensure did not happen again, I gave very clear instructions for delivery:.

Two of the issues raised:

  • unable to log into account
  • question the hike in price of minimum order for frozen meals from £24 to £36 a big jump

Until I tried to order frozen meals, I was not aware there was a problem. My account did not even appear to exist.

What of the £20 credited my account for previous failures?

My account apparently did exist, but not able to log in. To be resolved.

Credit of £20. No, not showing. Once again, credit it to my account, or so I was assured. I was not though able to verify as unable to log in.

Place Order. Very clear instructions for delivery.

morning

  • leave on bench seat at back of house
  • do not call at house
  • leave card in door

afternoon

  • call at house and hand to resident
  • if no one home follow instructions for morning

Instructions could not have been clearer, nevertheless instructions were completely ignored. Left at the front, in the sun, in full view of the street, called at the house, no card left in letter box.

The box was rescued twenty minutes later. The side of the box warm where in the sun. Box not cold as would expect during sub-zero temperatures. I raised yesterday my concerns delivery not by food delivery trucks.

Delivery driver lied where box left, not left in front porch, as photo taken by driver shows.

Box relocated to back of house on bench seat as my instructions.

Three hours later the box was checked. It was cold, which only serves to confirm my concern not using refrigerator trucks. Alarmed to find warning dry ice, I opened very very carefully. There was no dry ice. Warm delivery van.

Use of courier service not specialist food delivery company, for example Ocado, raises another issue, that of food hygiene.

Lentil moussaka taken out of the box, popped in the fridge, to be cooked in the oven later.

No problem with the lentil moussaka and no it is not moussaka but was delicious nevertheless and no nasty additives.

As dusk approached, box brought into the house, contents placed in the freezer.

I thought no dry ice. I found down the side of the box. Two items horizontal three items sideways, between them and side of the box two pouches with dry ice. The warning should clearly stated this. I had ice burn on my fingers.

Packed badly. The two pouches should not have been side by side, one should have be either side of the contents for optimum cooling of contents.

E-mail Mindful Chef. No response.

Call Mindful Chef. Third call, second call in as many days. Each time on hold, many queries. Queries or complaints?  Insulted whilst on hold, robot message try e-mailing.

Eventually get a human. Previous helpful, not this time, rude, abrupt, tries to claim there is not a problem with deliveries. Er, twice in a row, only two deliveries, that is 100% failure.

He offers to refund my delivery. No such offer previous failed DPD delivery dumped in the rain during Storm Christoph.

Following phone call, I receive e-mail to say I had been credited the sum of my delivery. Hold on a minute, did I not have twenty pounds credit, why was I charged £29-97 which was then refunded? Where has my twenty pound credit gone?

Something I learnt was that Mindful Chef operate two accounts, one for recipe boxes. one for frozen meals, which may explain why I could not log in. What if a customer orders smoothies, does that go through a third account?

I have tried posting the problem through social media. I am blocked. They can bombard me with unwanted posts, but I can not post or comment.

Every time I open facebook, there is Mindful Chef in my face, scroll a short distance, Mindful Chef. I was receiving junk e-mail every day, but thankfully stopped a few days ago. Others have complained, text messages, nuisance phone calls.

Mindful Chef are paranoid, any critical comment deleted, person making the comment blocked.

Mindful Chef are not an ethical company as their greenwash would want us to believe. Mindful Chef is owned by Nestlé, but paranoid any mention of. No mention on their website, or the literature they send out. Post on social media a Nestle company, deleted, then blocked. Nestle ethical in the same breath is an oxymoron.

Mindful Chef operate a secret Facebook group, so secret a search does not find it. Post a  critical comment, for example flaws in one of their recipes, comment deleted, blocked.

There is a another secret group facebook group Mindful Chef Cancelers, yes I know, very silly name.  This consists of dissatisfied if not angry Mindful Chef customers.

An example of how angry Jenny Xanthe:

I’m so furious! I have left them a bad Google review and intend to do so with every format I can find – I understand that they will probably get a lot of new customers as the result of this deal but I feel like there should be more of an impact on their business than a few of us leaving!

But most of the time it is discussing Nestle ownership or alternative recipe box schemes. The obvious, actually go out and buy ingredients to cook with too blindingly obvious.

Update: A day later no response to my e-mail, not even an acknowledgement, neither to my conversation the previous day cannot access my account. To add insult to injury, I do receive an e-mail, junk e-mail promoting how healthy their frozen meals. Nor a response to tweet highlighting failed delivery. They do not care. Any criticism is deleted, those who post blocked. This is a cowboy operation.

Pork with colcannon and mustard sauce

January 27, 2021

It would help if when ordering Mindful Chef specify any extra equipment required, pots and pans a given.

Mashed potatoes requires a means to mash the potatoes, which I lack. An extra purchase, adds to the cost of the meal and not even possible as lockdown and all but non-essential shops are closed.

Therefore what to do? Various possibilities:

– par boil the potatoes then roast potatoes alongside the pork
– pop into town visit M&S Food Hall chilled ready made mashed potatoes
– pop into town visit M&S Food Hall chilled ready made colcannon potatoes

Pros and cons of all these options.

Very little fat on the pork, roasting potatoes alongside a non-starter.

Let’s see what M&S Food Hall has to offer. The two potatoes I will save and use for baked potatoes.

One reason I do not buy meat from a supermarket, apart from the low quality, is packaged in plastic. Meat supplied by Mindful Chef ticks both boxes.

Portion size? I ordered for one. The meat not sufficient for two, the potatoes and vegetables more than sufficient.

I will pop to a local butcher and order a second pork loin chop.

Valentine steak. Pretentious name for a pork loin chop with a lot of waste. Equally pretentious to call it a steak. Strictly speaking a variant on a loin chop, a horizontal cut halfway into the chop. Why? What purpose does it serve?

The humble potato is an extremely versatile vegetable.

Staying in Cyprus I ate most evenings in a hotel. Not once were the potatoes served the same, not once did chips appear.

My first encounter with colcannon potatoes which until then I had never heard of was at Secret Garden, not its full name, with an excellent Irish chef. Sadly the restaurant is no more. A crying shame.

Peter O’Connor kindly shared with me his recipe for colcannon potatoes, which is different to the variants of mashed potato plus.

Colcannon potatoes can be thought of as mashed potatoes plus. Create mashed potatoes, then add shredded cabbage or kale, maybe a spring onion or two or a chopped onion.

From M&S no mash, but I did find a pot of colcannon mashed potatoes. I was going to add to it, but decided against.

Spring onions in the box, not very good condition, to the compost heap, the cabbage not much better, but neither needed.

Colcannon in the oven in an oven dish. Splosh of rapeseed oil in baking tray, salt and pepper to season the chops, to go in he oven later.

Carrots sliced lengthwise, shallot diced, added in saucepan wit ha little oil.

Mushrooms supplied were not chestnut mushrooms, Excuse chestnut mushrooms not available. I had no problem obtaining mushrooms, nor when I inquired was there a shortage. But more expensive. Difference in final result, I do not know. The mushrooms were not in good enough condition for salad, ok for cooking.

I only used half the the mushrooms supplied, ie two. A mistake, I should have used all four. Tow saved to fry with bacon.

Illustrated mushrooms in a box as would use for eggs. No, a simple card box. I would prefer carsdas an egg box, use for kitchen scraps, then onto the compost heap.

Adding to a pot in olive oil a big mistake, not unless wish to ruin the pan. Maybe get away with non-stick pan. Use a small frying pan, then add with the chicken stock to a saucepan and gently simmer.

Chops taken out of oven, water in the saucepan drained into tray and back into the oven, emptied onto plate, then the gravy added. Note gravy not mustard sauce.

A very tasty dish.

— to be continued —

Mindful Chef recipe box DPD delivery

January 21, 2021

Service provided by Mindful Chef appalling. An order placed with Mindful Chef a couple of weeks ago should have arrived Sunday a week ago.

  • Mexican-style steak, avocado salsa & brown rice
  • Swedish-style pork meatballs & potato mash
  • Steak with salsa verde & parsnip fries

Nothing. I was given the run around. Friday I called, after being on hold for ten minutes whilst  insulted by a robot it’s quicker to e-mail, finally I had a human on the line. The lady apologised said I would have to order again, had the gall to charge me, and the order was no longer what I had originally ordered, the choices vary each week, though in reality a subtle variation.

  • Denver steak with harissa chickpea & pea shoot salad
  • Pork with colcannon and mustard sauce
  • Asian pork meatballs, kale & brown rice

Tuesday my second order arrived. A week and two days late from when I should have had a delivery.

The appalling service by Mindful Chef gets worse.

Tuesday morning a delivery, a delivery one week and two days late from scheduled Sunday a week ago.

Waiting all morning for a delivery. Will it arrive in time for lunch?

1225 Blinds to conservatory opened to find a large box sitting by the back door.

Not knowing it was there, had anyone opened the back door not expecting a parcel as a trip hazard, they would have tripped over, down three steps and smashed their head on concrete path, or worse, slammed head on the side of a low wall and split their skull open.

I was baffled, why was the plastic sealing tape covered in large drops of water, why was the box soaking wet? It was not raining.

I then found the card that had been left. Timed 0822. In other words, the large box had been sat outside for over four hours, sat outside in the rain.

Card left claimed I would find in porch, e-mail rear porch. There is no rear porch, there is no porch The parcel was dumped in the rain on the back doorstep. Whoever dumped parcel blatantly lied.

Weather forecast very heavy rain for next three days including Tuesday, Storm Christoph.

As yet I did not know if contents damaged. I left left sat outside on a bench to dry out whilst not raining.

Why ask for delivery instructions, if ignored?

A week ago, I asked this be escalated to CEO. I was still waiting.

Yet another complaint filed with Mindful Chef, to which I received a prompt, detailed response including an apology. A novelty on all three counts.

Opening the box a few hours later, the contents appeared to be undamaged, apart from a booklet at the bottom. of the box.

To me recipe boxes a novelty, I had heard of veg boxes though never used but not recipe boxes where all the ingredients for a meal contained in the box plus a recipe.

Opening the box when it had been left for three hours on a bench to dry I found

  • three plastic package with meat for each dish
  • three ingredient bags labelled with numbers which corresponded to numbers in the recipe booklet
  • a booklet about Mindful Chef
  • a recipe booklet
  • a Mindful Chef calendar

One of the reasons I do not buy meat from a supermarket, apart from the very poor quality, is that it is packed in plastic. I buy from a local family butcher, quality meat and they cut off what I ask for.

The meat was packed with two ice packs within an insulated bag. The insulated bags they ask to be returned to be reused.

The ice packs were rock solid. What to do with? I popped in the freezer. Would be cold in the summer unless delivered in a refrigerator van? Why use DPD, why not use food delivery service ocado?

Ingredients not yet examined. Box placed in a cool place for later examination.

The recipe booklet well produced, but if I expected to be easy, oh I was in for a surprise.

The recipes are not simple, not easy to follow, though with practice maybe would not be a problem. That the recipes are complicated would appear to defeat the entire rationale of a recipe box to make home cooking easy.

What is missing and an absolute must videos posted on vimeo for each and every recipe. Can then make oneself and to make easy, order from Mindful Chef.

A criticism when ordering, no mention of extra equipment may need to prepare the dish. Pots and pans a given, but not grater, a potato masher, which I do not have.

The recipe booklets useful if wish to go it alone without ordering a recipe box.

At £11 a dish, expensive. I could eat out cheaper, and not have to prepare, cook and do the washing up after.

Other dishes more expensive, salmon £12-50, venison £14.

A few dishes were cheaper, but with very cheap ingredients, for example beans and potato wedges £8 or chick peas and fried sweet potato wedges £9-50, although lentils and cauliflower £10.

To put in context, cod and sweet potato chips, with a tiny bit of salad £12, whereas if I pop along to High Farm fish n chip shop I can pick up excellent takeaway haddock and chips at a little over half the price, order on-line and ready for me to collect, or if it was open, Elite Fish Restaurant one of the best fish n chip restaurants in the country excellent haddock and chips and I am still paying less.

Note: Prices quoted single person per dish. If ordered for two or four, the cost would be lower, significantly lower, per person.

To also put in context compare with the disgusting lunch boxes shipped out to school children, not sufficient for a day, expected to provide five meals, and of very poor quality. These lunch boxes cost £30. With Mindful Chef, only three meals but enough for two kids or a kid and an adult, and as already noted the price drops significantly if for more than one person, and a bulk order would easily get costs down to £30 for a weekly delivery. Not that I am suggesting schools order from Mindful Chef, even though it would be better than what they currently receive in terms of quality and quantity, I would prefer to see schools contract local pubs and restaurants currently closed to supply delicious meals, local control, a lifeline to local businesses and the money is retained within the local community.

Whatever the quality of the meals, cost to one side, the ease or otherwise of the menus, what is hard to stomach is that Mindful Chef is owned by Nestle, especially when the founders had a choice, Nestle or Waitrose. A choice between a greedy rapacious corporation that destroys communities or a worker owned cooperative. A third option, was it even considered, the Brew Dog model, sell shares to customers.

Mindful Chef

January 16, 2021

I have come across veg boxes, though have never used, have not before come across recipe boxes.

I had not been out since New Years’s Eve, was not feeling well, I had been in contact with some one who was ill with coronavirus, food was running low. Mindful Chef seemed an option to consider.

A recipe box I learnt is a box of ingredients with a recipe giving instructions on the cooking.

I scrolled through the options, not sure how large the portion size, picked three meals for one person.

  • Mexican-style steak, avocado salsa & brown rice
  • Swedish-style pork meatballs & potato mash
  • Steak with salsa verde & parsnip fries

Late one night last week I tried to order. It would not progress beyond entering my post code.

Next day I tried again. This time I entered delivery address manually, all seemed to work, how to deliver,  credit card details.

Saturday an e-mail conforming delivery next day, or so I thought, I had scheduled Sunday. It was only later when I checked, it was junk meal offering frozen meals next day delivery.

Sunday I waited all day, night came, no delivery.

I posted on their facebook page, got nowhere. I sent an e-mail.

I was then given the run around over the following days.

Asked for details of my order. This I gave.

Next day asked for my post code.

I then volunteered my address, which I assumed they already had having given when I ordered. I clearly stated I required confirmation of delivery.

They had my details as how otherwise were they sending junk e-mails addressed to me personally?

Then nothing, a reminder each and every day, nothing. Request for e-mail of CEO, nothing.

In the meantime, to add insult to injury, junk e-mails every day, unwanted posts on facebook.  And just  when I thought could not get worse, I find posts on Facebook messenger.

I only have to open facebook, and there in my face unwanted junk from Mindful Chef, scroll a short distance, more junk from Mindful Chef.

Friday afternoon having heard nothing for three days, apart from unwanted junk. I called.

Ten minute wait to get a real person. Whilst waiting a robot message, get a quicker response if e-mail.

Eventually after waiting ten minutes a real person came on the line.  I am told the long delay, failure to deal with e-mails failure to deal with the problem, I am told a small team, too many queries. I was told the same story in one of the first e-mails. Clearly trained to trot out this pathetic excuse. And why so many queries? Many queries, people like me getting nowhere?

I place an order again over the phone, only now I cannot order what I originally ordered and have to pay again.

  • Denver steak with harissa chickpea & pea shoot salad
  • Pork with colcannon and mustard sauce
  • Asian pork meatballs, kale & brown rice

A rotating weekly menu, but if compare with my original order, which was not delivered, variations on a theme.

At £11 a dish, expensive. I could eat out cheaper, and not have to prepare, cook and do the washing up after.

Other dishes more expensive, salmon £12-50, venison £14.

A few dishes were cheaper, but with very cheap ingredients, for example beans and potato wedges £8 or chick peas and fried sweet potato wedges £9-50, although lentils and cauliflower £10. To put in context, cod and sweet potato chips, with a tiny bit of salad £12, whereas if I pop along to my local fish n chip shop and pick up excellent takeaway haddock and chips at a little over half the price, order on-line and ready for me to collect, or if it was open, one of the best fish n chip restaurants in the country excellent haddock and chips and I am still paying less.

Note: Prices quoted single person per dish. If ordered for two or four, the cost would be lower, significantly lower, per person.

A reputable company would have not forced me to pay again, they would have apologised and sent out the order gratis.

Now the order not what I originally ordered will be delivered Tuesday, a week and two days late.

Every time I open facebook, unwanted junk posts from Mindful Chef.

Today in my face, Mindful Chef, smoothies for a delicious breakfast.

Delicious breakfast not difficult.

  • muesli zero waste stall
  • unpasteurised raw milk farmers market
  • bananas fruit and vegetable stall
  • wholemeal bread local baker

Smoothies are hot healthy. Smoothies are very high in sugar content.

Sugar is a killer. Obesity, type II diabetes, heart conditions, tooth decay.

Are these smoothies even fresh?

Delivered in a pack, stored in a freezer, watered down to consume, sounds like dehydrated. Not very fresh. Big mark up.

Invest in a decent blender (need two) buy fresh fruit and vegetables off a decent market stall and make ones own.

Try

  • apple, orange, carrots and ginger

A juice not a smoothie. The ginger about the size of a thumb.

But, having not watched the video, and now watched, would still need a blender for the Mindful Chef packet, therefore what has been gained? Would still need a blender. Buy fresh fruit and vegetables off a market stall.

My contact details have been given for the sole purpose of fulfilling my order. My consent has not been given for any other use. Mindful Chef are in breach of data protection legislation. A breach ICO should look into.

Mindful Chef likes to masquerade as an ethical company.

we can’t just work with anyone. Look at our name – Mindful Chef – they have to fit in with us and our values and what we’re trying to achieve. We’re an ethical business trying to do things better which is a lot harder doing it that way; it’s more difficult to get really good margins. For example when you buy free range chickens or 100% grass fed beef then it’s a lot more expensive.

Mindful Chef is owned by Nestle.

And the food, the contents of the recipe boxes, does hype pan out in reality? I do not know, as come tomorrow, it will be a week has passed by for my original delivery. When it does arrive Tuesday, I will post again as to what was my experience.

But my experience to date, Mindful Chef a company with piss-poor service and appalling customer service when things go wrong.


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