In collaboration with Second Harvest Food Bank, (13) ASICS Corp. employess came to UC ANR South Coast REC as part of their team building exercises during Earth Week. Tammy Majcherek, welcomed the group talking about the REC System including a brief overview of harvest instructions and information about the ACP/HLB issues, also explained how rare and important it is for food banks to receive and provide those in need with fresh fruits and vegetables. The fruits collected today will be washed and distributed across the county to the hungry.
Pairing up with Second Harvest and ASICS creates a very unique situation: Second Harvest seeks opportunities to provide for the hungry, ASICS employees are willing to donate time to harvest orchards, especially those where the fruit may otherwise go to waste; UC ANR South Coast REC is able to provide a nutritious food source for the less fortunate in the community through it's extension project largely maintained by volunteers which is used to educate the public through workshops and tours. Bringing these groups together benefits the community by assisting the REC with additional man power to properly glean the citrus, important to the health of the trees, and provides Second Harvest with fresh produce to distribute at the affiliated food banks.
Led by Center staff and UCCE Master Gardeners – Orange County, the group from ASICS gleaned the valencia oranges located at the Center. While harvesting the citrus, the Master Gardener volunteers educated the teams about the various citrus varieties, safe and proper pruning techniques, issues surrounding the Asian Citrus Psyllid and HLB.
Though it was a small crew, a final tally of the gleaned fruit was 4,259 lbs. The volunteers were very proud of their contribution to such a worthy cause.