The original item was published from December 1, 2015 9:43 AM to December 1, 2015 9:44 AM
From June to November, 103 Harvest
Pierce County volunteers attended 96
harvests with the Gleaning Project,
capturing a total of 44,619lbs of
produce that would have otherwise
gone to waste. The overall harvest
this year included everything from
beets, squash, and beans, to figs,
strawberries, and even kiwi!
Gleaners get to experience not only
the different edibles that come with
each season, but also our county’s
wide range of food-producing terrain.
We’ve harvested in the wild beauty of
an abandoned orchard that’s become
an agricultural research station. We’ve
made our way through rows of corn
planted by a third generation farmer.
We’ve picked hundreds of pounds of
pears and persimmons from a yard
filled with trees that had been lovingly
tended and passed down through generations
in one family. We’ve harvested
from commercial farms, homesteads,
backyards, parks, and gardens.
The land’s abundance exists in stark
contrast to the fact that one in five
Washingtonians rely on food banks.
Food that is trucked from across the
country and shipped from around
the world is both financially and
environmentally expensive, creating a
situation where food is plentiful but
only within reach of those who can
afford it. With the Gleaning Project,
volunteers harvest the nutritious bounty all around us, making healthy
food that is both carbon neutral
and free available to all community
members, regardless of their income.
Every pound of our 44,619lb total has
been picked, loaded, and delivered by
our dedicated volunteers. Gleaners bring
produce to food banks, community
groups, shelters, hot meal sites, and
schools, to name a few. The Gleaning
Project strengthens community members’
connection to the environment
and to each other as we work together
to bring the bounty of the land to
meet the need of our neighbors.