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Community Harvest is a regional gleaning project that seeks to increase access to fresh, local produce, by working with farmers, orchardists, and gardeners to harvest excess or unmarketable crops and donate the produce to local emergency food providers.
Community Harvest works toward this goal by engaging volunteer gleaners in field gleans, farmers market gleans, and a Plant a Row for the Hungry project. During field gleans volunteers harvest food directly from producers’ fields and backyards that would otherwise stay on the vine or branch and never make it to consumers’ plates. Farmers Market volunteers attend local markets and solicit donations from shoppers, as well as unsold produce from vendors at the end of the market. Finally, the Plant a Row for the Hungry campaign seeks to engage members of the community, particularly in more rural areas, by distributing seeds to independent gardeners, encouraging them to plant extra seeds and cultivate plants specifically dedicated for donation to local food banks.