What is Gleaning?
Gleaning, in the modern sense, is all about food recovery. Food that might otherwise go to waste is collected and shared with those in need. The practice originated in Biblical times when farmers were encouraged to leave a portion of their crops unharvested so that those in need could be invited to share in the harvest. Gleaning may target fields, farms, or residential gardens. In recent years, gleaning has seen a resurgence in popularity as awareness grows about food waste and food security. Gleaning has the potential to improve local food security but is often undertaken informally and sporadically.
What is the Gleaning Abundance Program?
The Gleaning Abundance Program (GAP) began in 2013 as an Interior Health Authority funded Community Food Action Initiative. The GAP seeks to preserve and protect our local food systems by helping home owners care for and make use of their food crops. Our main focus is fruit trees, but we also glean farms and gardens. The GAP is a win-win-win program – our homeowners get their crops harvested, our volunteers get free fresh-picked produce, and local social agencies get an abundance of fruit and vegetables to use in their food outreach programs.