The Kansas City Star recently had an article about gleaning. Gleaning as referred to in the article is the process of collecting crops from farmers’ fields that have already been mechanically harvested. It isn’t economically profitable to pick the remaining crops from these fields but using volunteer labor the crops can be harvested for use by charities. The Society of St. Andrew, mentioned in the article, is a leading food recovery organization and has a website at EndHunger.org. I might volunteer for this charity in the future.
Gleaning also has a more general meaning of recovering any food that would otherwise go to waste. Some examples of this on a personal level are sharing food from a bumper garden crop that would otherwise go to waste or allowing someone to pick fruit from your fruit tree that you don’t have the inclination to pick. I have benefited from this type of food gleaning in the past although I didn’t know that was the name for it. If you have the opportunity to glean food for yourself it could be a good way to save some money and prevent food from going to waste.