In the town my sister lives in there is a local community group that offers fruit picking services to folks with overloaded trees. The produce they pick is then donated to local shelters. Talk about a win-win: Home owners are spared rotten fruit cleanup, landfills are spared tons of extra fill, and hungry locals get to eat.
Neighborhood Fruit, a new San Francisco-based website, takes this whole idea one step further by creating a place where tree owners can register their varieties and non-tree-owning neighbors can sign up to share in the bounty.
According to their site:
“Neighborhood Fruit was created to make use of the abundant fruit growing in our urban neighborhoods. Currently, the bulk of fruit grown in back yards in our cities goes to waste, while the fruit we consume is grown in water-intensive orchards far from our homes.
We envision a different future, where the bulk of backyard fruit is utilized and shared between neighbors. We envision a future where the food we eat is truly fresh, seasonal and local. Our diets replete with home-made goodies.”
The site is still pretty new and they are still adding functionality and working out some kinks, but it’s definitely worth a visit (and a bookmark) especially if you live in or around San Francisco.
Looking for another charitable way to dispose of your unused fruit? There are a number of regional groups that collect and donate excess produce to local shelters and food organizations. Here are just a few: