By Karen Lehr KIVI TV Channel 6 Boise.
CREATED Jul 18, 2014
Anyone who’s successfully grown backyard produce quickly learns you’re likely to end up with an ample harvest of fresh organic goods.
That’s why Gary Oppenheimer founded AmpleHarvest.org – to connect the dots between home gardeners and people in the community that need it.
“The heart of AmpleHarvest.org is a food waste solution to deal with the staggering amounts of fresh food, locally grown but not consumed across America,” Oppenheimer said.
A recent report done by the National Gardening Association shows there are 42 million people in the US grow food at home – or 35% of American homes.
“Tomatoes thrive really well here,” Erin Guerricabeitia with the Boise Urban Garden School said. “During this time of year lots of peppers, lots of squash, zucchini, we do melons well here in the valley.”
Now home growers can just log on to AmpleHarvest.org, type in their zip code and find nearby food pantries that accept fresh produce donations.
“You can get online and look at where the closest one is to you sometimes there’s one not even a mile away from your home,” Guerricabeitia said.
“The idea here is that instead of letting that food go bad in your garden, get it to a food pantry in your community and let them get it to the people that really need it,” Oppenheimer said.
This gives people in need access to fresh food- not just boxed or canned goods.
“The clients are taking home food that was harvested a few hours ago. It’s fresher than what you or I could buy in a supermarket,” Oppenheimer said.
AmpleHarvest.org currently works with roughly 7,000 pantries across the United States, including about 220 in Idaho alone.
Donations are even tax deductable.
AmpleHarvest.org is now partners with the US “Feds Feed Families” food drive. Click Here for more details.
Click Here to find a pantry near you.