Growing Local; Feeding Local
Since Fruits of Sherbrooke started in Edmonton, Alberta 5 years ago, Christina, Carol, Al and an amazing team of volunteers have rescued forgotten urban fruit and created unforgettable jams, jellies and condiments. "Rescued" means fruit grown in homeowners' backyards that's not being used. So, with the homeowner's permisssion, we pick it for our products so the fruit isn't wasted.
There's always more than enough fruit grown locally to make these amazing products. In fact, every year in our city thousands of kilos of unwanted fruit and vegetables go into landfills. Last year alone, we diverted 15,000kg of rescued apples to food programs throughout Edmonton. But this year, the dream is to do it differently...
Our goal is to produce 50,000 apple snack bags and donate them to E4C's School Nutrition Program.
According to the Social Planning Council’s 2015 Poverty Profile, 1 in 5 children in Edmonton live in poverty and about 40% of the people served by Edmonton’s Food Bank in a typical month are children and youth under the age of 18.
The School Nutrition Program provides a nutritious mid-morning snack or breakfast each school day to over 5,600 students in 23 high-needs schools.
“E4C’s School Nutrition Program helps to lessen the stress on families, as parents know that their children will receive something to eat in the morning, even when they miss breakfast. It helps children to concentrate and learn more effectively; students look forward to the snack everyday.” – Principal, E4C Partner School
Together, let's give a rising star a healthy start to their day!
Time is Ticking
If you know Edmonton, our growing and harvest season is short. Picking season is from late August to October...or until it snows. So we have to work quickly!
Funds will go towards buying commercial grade dehydrating equipment and apple slicers, supplies, ingredients, packaging/labelling, storage bins and transportation. Right now, our kitchen is limited in its production capacity so we need to upgrade our operation to successfully, and quickly, produce the 50,000 apple snacks.
We will have the apple snacks ready for E4C to distribute to schools by December 2015 - just in time for the winter semester.
Benefits of Apples
Our snacks will come in 3 flavours: Cherry, Apple Spice and Natural. No sugar added. No preservatives. No artificial flavours or colours.
Apples are a great source of calcium, vitamin C and potassium! A 1/2 cup serving of dried apple chips contains 3.7g of dietary fibre, equals a 1 cup serving of fruit and contains 4% of the daily recommended intake of potassium - a mineral essential to nerve and brain function.
Contact Annette Schouten Woudstra, Director, for more information on the E4C School Nutrition Program - firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have an apple tree in Edmonton or surrounding cities that you'd like picked for our project, drop us a line at: FruitStars@FruitsOfSherbrooke.ca
We are a city of unity; a city of giving. We are proud to partner with E4C on Project: Fruit Stars. Our many teams of volunteers are ready to start picking, dehydrating and packing the snack bags for the winter semester.
At E4C, Annette, Matthew, Teena and many incredible E4C staff will be helping us with coordinating picking volunteers, transportation and storage of apples, and social media/marketing. E4C has also donated the use of their amazing kitchen for production and fulfillment!
Fruits of Sherbrooke
Carol is Head Cook and Co-founder. She is a social worker who worked in both private and federal government positions. She has a passion for cooking and has developed all of the recipes used by Fruits of Sherbrooke. She has also run a small catering company and has co-authored 2 cookbooks.
Christina is Community Coordinator and Co-founder. She has many years of experience in the food services industry. She organizes picking sites, volunteers to pick, transportation of fruits, and distribution of excess fruit to food programs. Christina is the "vision" behind Project: Fruit Stars.
Al is Marketing Coordinator and Co-founder. He's had an IT consulting firm for several years. He sells at farmer's markets every weekend throughout the summer months, manages and trains all vendor volunteers and organizes the books so every jar is accounted for.
Jo-anne will be leading the kitchen for Project: Fruit Stars and overseeing the production and packaging of the 50,000 apple snack bags. She has extensive food industry experience in Alberta and BC.
I, Maple Rose, will be coordinating the Project; Fruit Stars campaign, overseeing social media and other marketing; and making sure the rewards are fulfilled and delivered on time. I have 13 years experience in marketing/PR and spent 4 of those years in the fundraising department for a local non-profit.
Ann, Crystal, Dinkenesh, Sandy, Barb and Bekki are our regular kitchen volunteers who will be assisting with production and fulfillment. They are incredible ladies who have been with Fruits of Sherbrooke for many years combined.
Special thanks for your generous support:
- Video Production: Paul Cheung
- Logo/Graphic Design/Website Development: Jessalyn King
- Website Development: Mimi YuFan You
- Campaign Photographer: Lance Hansen
- Fruits of Sherbrooke Product Photographer: Ewa Piecha
- E4C Photographer: Leanne Olson
Like us on Facebook: Project Fruit Stars
Instagram: FruitSherbrooke | #FruitStarsYEG
Risks and challenges
Our potentially greatest obstacle is an early snow fall, or frost. Sometimes winter in Edmonton starts as early as October; sometimes we're lucky and it doesn't snow until late November/early December.
So far, this year we've had incredibly warm weather. We've been very fortunate that the sun has being shining in abundance. However, with more sun than rain, the apples are ready to be picked a few weeks earlier than normal. And, hence, the reason why our Kickstarter campaign is only 3 weeks. Mother nature can't wait.
If our harvest time is cut short because of weather, we are fortunate to have some great community partners who can donate their unused apples. Growers, grocery stores, hotels, restaurants and other organizations who always have extra apples are standing by to donate if we need them. Although these apple donations may not have been grown locally, they can still be used to make tasty apple snacks.
One other possible challenge might be that the kids prefer one flavour more than the others, and we run out of their favourite. The feedback on the flavours has been equally positive so far, but we never know with kids!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (21 days)