22nd Feb, 2020

Plenty to glean from their fruit frugality

Redditch Editorial 5th Dec, 2015 Updated: 18th Oct, 2016

A LOCAL green group in Redditch has joined the revolution to reduce food waste and help people in poverty.

Members of ‘Transition Town Redditch’ joined a group of 20 volunteers from the Worcestershire Gleaning Network to pick apples that would otherwise have been left to rot on the trees.

Picking over three tonnes of apples on a farm near Alcester this week, the harvest was distributed to charities and social centres across the Midlands, helping the homeless and people on low incomes.

Organisations who benefited include Redditch Food Bank, The Sandycroft Centre, RYCE and The Emmanuel Church.

Local gleaner Alistair Waugh said: “There really wasn’t much wrong with these apples, yet they were rejected by a supermarket after some apples were marked by a recent hailstorm. Other apples were too small.

“Every year a fifth of all the fruit and vegetables grown on farms in Europe never actually leaves the farm. However, in the UK alone there are over five million people in poverty. It’s time to put a stop to food waste. We need a revolution in how food is produced and distributed.”

The Worcestershire Gleaning Network, set-up this year, has already rescued over 15 tonnes of apples over the last month.

“Interest in gleaning has increased since the recent Hugh Fernley-Whittingstall ‘War on Waste’ TV programmes,” said Alistair.

“Next year we hope more Worcestershire farmers and growers will contact us, so we can not just save apples from rotting but soft fruit, root crops and other vegetables.”

For more details of the ‘glean revolution’ contact: worcestershire@feedbackglobal.org or visit www.feedbackglobal.org .

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