Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Spinach Revisited

Exactly two years ago to this day I fumbled my way through a row of spinach at Four Season Farm, getting a grand total of 8lbs of spinach, most of which got taken to the Emmaus Center in Ellsworth. Eliot Coleman set me up with a knife and some plastic bags and showed me what to do. I filled two bags and quit; honestly it felt a little strange. I remember using the spinach to bribe my first volunteers, giving a bag of spinach to anyone at the University of Maine Cooperative Extension 2013 Plant Sale who would sign up to be a gleaner.

This Spring 2015 we have exceeded our spinach gleaning expectations and increased by 50 times the amount gleaned in 2013. With crates, and harvesting knives, a lot more experience and 5 powerful volunteers (Kristin Witting, Paula Mrozicki, Little D, Christina Fortin and Katrina Fennelly) we gleaned 25 crates of spinach, were able to distribute 450lbs (4500 servings) to 10 food pantries and meal sites, reaching over 1,000 families in Hancock County through the following food security organizations: Simmering Pot Community Meal and Tree of Life Food Pantry in Blue Hill, Bucksport Community Concerns Food Pantry, H.O.M.E Co-op in Orland, Dinner is Served and Island Pantry in Deer Isle & Stonington, The Welcome Table, Emmaus Center and Loaves and Fishes Food Pantry in Ellsworth, and the Bar Harbor Food Pantry. All pantries and community meal sites that were open last week were contacted, others who were not open were not contacted; more will come. Thank you all for the amazing work you do to address food security in Hancock County. Contact your local food pantry by going to Healthy Acadia's website -

Healthy Acadia and UMaine Cooperative Extension's Gleaning Initiative serves over 30 food security organizations in Hancock and Washington counties. Please be in touch for more information at / (207) 667 7171

NOTE: The pictures below were taken and provided by Brendan Bullock, a photographer who is working on a collaborative project commissioned by the Mainers Feeding Mainers Program of Good Shepherd Food Bank, and Maine Farmland Trust, documenting food access projects in Maine.

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