Gleaning on Farms and at Farmers Markets
Healthy Acadia’s Downeast Gleaning Initiative partners with farms and food assistance programs to reduce food waste and make healthy food available to more people in our community. Developed in 2013 in partnership with University of Maine Cooperative Extension, the project has redistributed over 333,000 pounds of healthy local food to people experiencing food insecurity.
Volunteers are trained to harvest fruit and vegetables at local farms and gardens and to deliver this produce to local food pantries and other recipient organizations. Volunteers also have the opportunity to glean at farmers markets and can be connected to a market in their own community. Volunteers have the opportunity to travel to beautiful local farms, gardens, and markets; learn how food is grown and harvested on a professional scale; and bring home some freshly harvested produce. Volunteers may work independently or as part of a team. Ideal candidates will volunteer at least three times a year, though volunteers who can participate on a weekly or biweekly basis make the most impact.