Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Orange Picking

Orange Blossom Trail. Orange County. Town of Tangerine. Orange Groves. The Orange Peal. You get the idea, Central Florida is home to a ton of oranges and orange groves. What has happened is that with urban sprawl, many of these orange groves have been broken up into lots and private homes built which are surrounded by these trees with no laborers to collect the fruit. Well, a service oriented teacher at Cypress Creek, Nicolle Boujaber contacted the Society of St. Andrews to join us in getting these oranges in the hands of the needy. This is how it worked. She took her 9th Grade Global Studies class on a field trip to Mt. Dora to glean oranges from trees and she invited Ms. Berney, Ms. Dye, and my self to go with her. So we picked oranges for about 3 hours and collected the huge amount that was piled up in the last picture.
This fruit will go directly to a food bank or to churches to distribute to the needy. According to Becky from the Society of St. Andrews, for every pound of food collected, three people will be fed. If these oranges had not been collected, they would have gone to waste! To waste! She explained that a huge amount of food goes to waste everyday in the United States that could be used to feed people everywhere. I am so glad I got invited to go, but the more I think about it, the more I feel more could be done.

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Ana said...

Wow. What a great idea. Back in Brooks we had a crabapple tree. We never used the apples, and the first year we were there they went to waste. But every year we tried to find someone that wanted them. There were Hudderites Colonies near town, and we eventually got some to come collect our apples so they could use it.

I have been looking at lots of urban farming kind of sites and there is a growing movement to use land more effectively to feed the hungry in our country. A Church in LA recently turned their lawn into a garden for the hungry. (see this post: )

Flssgrl said...

WOW....that is a ton of oranges what a great way to give back!

Rosangela Canino-Koning said...

Did you get to eat any yourself? :)

Elba said...

Ana thank you for the link. I will check it out. And Rosita, about the oranges, yes, there were so many that they allowed us to take some back with us. I was hoping the tangerines had been sweeter but they were a bit bitter, but the oranges were sweet and great for juice. I really want a good orange marmalade recipe to make good use of them. When I got back to school I gave a lot away to adults and today to students. I've also given some to friends and neighbors. It seems this bag of oranges has multiplied. It's been amazing.