Gleaning Network UK is an exciting new initiative to save the thousands of tonnes of fresh fruit and vegetables that are wasted on UK farms every year.
Farmers across the country often have no choice but to leave tonnes of their crops unharvested and get ploughed back in the soil. These crops cannot reach the market either because they fail to meet the retail strict cosmetic standards or because of overproduction. At the same time, 5.8 million people suffer from deep poverty in the UK and cannot afford a decent diet, and this number is on the rise.
Gleaning Network UK coordinates teams of volunteers, local farmers and food redistribution charities in order to salvage this fresh, nutritious food and direct it to those that need it most.
Several tonnes of excellent British produce â€“ enough for thousands of meals â€“have already been saved in Kent, Sussex, Lincolnshire, and new gleaning groups are being formed in Manchester and Bristol. Apples, kale, cauliflowers, red, white and savoy cabbages have been among the crops saved by the Gleaning Network so far.
The Feeding the 5000 campaign is appealing to farmers across the UK to join in and allow volunteer â€˜gleanersâ€™ to harvest their unwanted produce for charity.
Gleaning is an ancient practice dating back to medieval times.
Are you a farmer with surplus produce or a redistribution charity and want to become part of Gleaning Network UK?
Are you an individual and want to become a modern day gleaner? Fill in the form below and we will let you know when there's a gleaning day near you.