The neglected urban orchard

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Every season, I am amazed at how much fruit is growing around us and left to rot on the trees or on the ground. I have been dreaming of starting a collective that would facilitate harvesting the neglected fruit trees.

This would be a great way to empower people that have a hard time finding mainstream work. Young and not so young that struggle with dependences or mental health issues? Business school graduates looking for a first project to work on?

Would it be this hard to leave a letter or knock on the doors of houses where we can spot trees bending under the weight of their fruits?

A team could find the trees and get the resident’s authorization to pick the fruits. Fruits would be picked. Then cleaned, cured, preserved or sold directly. An industrial kitchen could be rented of free to use (a bit like what CERES is doing with their kitchen near the market…).

If my friends and I have picked hundreds of dollars of fruits these last few weeks (while working full time), there is no doubt in my mind we could create a financially viable community supported and supporting business.

At this time of year we could be picking:

Olives, Persimmons, Pomegranate, Apples, Quinces, Guavas, Feijoas, Citruses, Monstera fruits…

Pomegranates are sold $3 each! The tree in front of my house has about 30 on it, all bursting with stain prone red goodness!

Olives are worth between $10 and $25  a KG, three of us picked around 75kg in an hour…

Who’s in?

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