Fresh, organic vegetables plucked from the farm and delivered to you within 24 hours? Sign us up! In our latest edition of ‘8Shades Of,’ we’re talking to Alvin Kwong of Magic Organics Co. – a local produce supplier that does just that.
Besides his passion for produce, Alvin is also working on reducing waste in the farming industry – from foam boxes to single-use plastics. Learn more about his mission for Magic Organics Co., his favourite eco products and ways to cook vegetables below:
1.In one sentence, tell us what you do!
At Magic Organics Co., we grow organic vegetables on our farms and deliver them to our customers in 24 hours or less.
2. Why are you an 8Shader?
During my seven years in the farming business (growing, selling and distributing), I’ve seen countless foam boxes, plastic bags and cardboard boxes turn into disgusting waste and garbage.
At the same time, we’re serving customers who ask, every time without fail, after their first delivery whether we can deliver their veggies without the use of single-use plastic.
So, since 2017, we’ve been testing out bio-plastics, no-packaging options, paper, coolers, cold trucks and beeswax wraps.
Why do I care? Because the current supply chain for vegetables is not incentivising farmers to improve farming practices. Veggies must be sprayed with toxic pesticides to survive day-long transport and there is too much single-use packaging.
3. Your best eco habit and a guilty not-so-green habit?
We bring our recyclables to the recycling shops to collect points. As for my not-so-green habit, it’s driving, especially in the summer when it’s scorching hot out and I’m spewing exhaust on everyone thanks to my A/C on full blast.
4. Fave eco product?
My reusable coffee cup! I got a Keep cup from a media event several years ago and it still works perfectly! Last year, I got an insulated one from Corkcicle (the lid is so-so), so I’m looking at the Yeti Rambler 20 oz – perfect for cold drinks in the car!
5. Fave veggie dish in HK?
I love trying veggie options at fine dining restaurants, because they really put in work to get the flavours out. Recently I had a small dish that was peas on peas on peas at new restaurant, Vivant.
6. How did you get into organic farming, and what’s the most rewarding thing about running Magic Organics Co.?
My parents go into the organic farming business back in 2003 with their organic farm in Kam Tin, N.T. At that time and for a long time, I wasn’t interested in farming or vegetables at all. It wasn’t until I came back from Canada in 2015 when I started selling veggies did I realise that there might be something here!
Seven years and thousands of deliveries later, I’d say that the most rewarding part of my work is speaking with happy customers. What keeps me going today is our mission, which is to eliminate single-use packaging from farm to table. We’ve worked on this concept for years and today, we’re connected with the right partners who can help us make this happen.I’m both excited and nervous!
7. What are some of your favourite veggies, and how do you like to prepare them?
Anything that can be put into the oven! In the summer, we make a lot of kale or eggplant chips. All you need is a little oil, salt and pepper, roast for a few mins and that’s it!
In the winter, I use a lot of carrots for roasting, but also for Chinese soups. The Chinese lettuce from our farm is also extra sweet and crispy – perfect for hot pot!
8. Finally, what shade of green are you?
I’m definitely in the light green department. I’m excited for 8Shades to show me – and our customers – how to change that!
NEXT: See all ‘8Shades Of‘ interviews
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