At Edmonton's Food Bank, we are always happy to accept donations of home grown fruit. Unfortunately, some items like crab apples aren't suitable for our hampers as they don't offer the same benefits as other fruit. For example, it takes a number of crab apples to equal the food value of one regular sized apple and often a lot of processing to make them palatable, which takes time or materials our clients often don't have.
We have explored ways we could process the fruit for our clients and partnerships with collective kitchens and agencies. In January, we approached Prairie North Cider Company and learned they had been thinking of approaching us too! Prairie North Cider is an Edmonton startup that rescues surplus fruit that would otherwise go to waste and, starting this year, is turning it into cider that is inspired by local flavours. They are a social enterprise investing their time, energy and profits back into the community. They offered a solution to our issue of excess fruits while also offering to support our work.
Starting this August, Edmonton’s Food Bank will pass along excess fruit to Prairie North Cider to be made into Yegcider. Once the cider is ready, $1 per litre will come back to Edmonton’s Food Bank! This partnership will allow us to use all the fruit that is generously picked and donated to help people in need in Edmonton.
Edmontonians can join Prairie North Cider’s Backyard Harvest Club and donate fruit for cider in exchange, donors get perks such as classes, merchandise and invites to exclusive events. Donations and volunteering with Prairie North Cider partners will also earn fruit donors entries in an end of the season draw for great prizes. To learn more visit their website www.prairienorthcider.com
Harvesting Your Fruit.
Edmonton’s Food Bank receives many calls over the summer from Edmontonians seeking help harvesting fruit they would like to donate. Unfortunately, we are unable to help with harvesting and are only able to recommend they contact one of the fruit sharing groups in Edmonton. If you are looking for help with your harvest check out Operation Fruit Rescue or Fruits of Sherbrooke. Another option is to have a fruit harvesting party and invite friends to pick as much as they want.