CSUN’s Institute for Sustainability and the nonprofit Food Forward have teamed up for the past nine years to provide Valencia oranges from the grove to those who are food insecure in Los Angeles and Ventura counties. Food Forward fights hunger and prevents food waste by collecting fresh surplus produce.
In June, more than 100 volunteers came to the grove on the south side of campus to help out, picking more than 3,500 pounds in two hours. The fruit was donated to three local agencies: Project Angel Food, SOVA Community Food & Resource Program, and the Family Rescue Center.
“From a sustainability perspective, the orange picks tie in to a lot of things we are passionate about, like addressing food insecurity and reducing food waste,” said Sarah Johnson, sustainability program analyst at the CSUN Institute for Sustainability. “Through these picks, we are able to harvest produce that would have otherwise gone to waste and feed the community with fresh, locally grown fruit.”
Jason Landers, the Los Angeles harvest coordinator for Food Forward, said that working with CSUN has blossomed into a wonderful partnership between the two organizations.
For more information about volunteer opportunities and information about the Institute for Sustainability, please visit https://www.csun.edu/sustainability. For more information about Food Forward, please visit https://foodforward.org.