In the days of Alhambra's beginning as an organized city, Rufus Fiske Bishop, who arrived with his family from Massachusetts to Alhambra in the 1880s, saw "a valley, wide and open, yellow with stubble; shimmering in the summer haze eastward, stretching from the blue mountains to the brown hills, with here and there a green blotch of young orchards and vineyard toward Pasadena or the foothills."
The city may no longer be an agricultural haven, but orange, persimmon, lemon and more trees remain in backyards. And in too many cases these fruits are going to waste, rotting on the trees and on the ground.
Food Forward, a two-year-old non-profit organization, will harvest your mature fruit trees, multi-tree private orchards or gardens with excess fruit and vegetables to share with those in need: 100% of all fruit harvested by Food Forward is donated to local food pantries. You can also volunteer to help pick with the organization (which *disclaimer* I did last weekend in Santa Barbara). All fruit donors will receive a charitable contribution tax receipt.
The details from Food Forward can be found below or on their website.
1. Please fill out as much information about your tree(s) as you can. After we receive your completed registration form, we will add your tree(s) to our database.
2. We will contact you via phone and/or email within 48-72 hours with any questions we have. We will schedule a site visit so that we can look at your tree(s), take pictures (if necessary) and work with you to determine when your fruit is ripe.
3. Once we determine that your fruit is ripe, we will schedule a harvesting date.
We send out volunteer harvesting teams to pick your excess fruit and vegetables, on a pre-arranged day and time. It is not required for a homeowner to be present on the day/time we harvest but if you are home and want to help, we would love you to join us!
Please note:We often have high demand, and give priority to seniors, people with disabilities, and properties with at least 150 lbs. of fruit available. Consequently we may not be able to harvest every home and appreciate your patience as our organization grows!
All Food Forward volunteers will be trained in proper harvesting methods and sign waivers of liability.
There is no charge for our volunteers to harvest your tree(s), although we do appreciate and rely upon public support. Please visit our support page to see how you can help.
As of August 2010, there is an Oriental Fruit Fly quarantine in effect in parts of Los Angeles County (Pasadena and San Marino). Food Forward is working closely with the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) regarding quarantine procedures.
Food Forward carries full liability insurance for all its volunteer harvesting related activities.