Group gleans from fields to fill food banks

The nonprofit Society of St. Andrew society depends on volunteers who pick surplus food that farmers can't sell or processors can't use. Last year, more than 31,000 of the group's volunteers gleaned more than 12 million pounds of fruit and vegetables. food.

The Society of St. Andrew opened a regional office in Kansas City last year. The society, which was concentrated in the South and Southeast, was interested in expanding west. Kansas City was a logical spot because of its transportation network and proximity to farms.

The society collects salvageable food two ways: by picking up rejects from food-packing companies and by laboring on farms. The group wants edible produce, but beyond that — bring on the ugly, the small, the blemished from the fields. If the gleaners don't pick it, the farmers would turn it back into the soil.

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