The Gleaning Program


Gleaning 2018

Orientation dates have not yet been set. The new dates will be set in mid-March. Please check back at that time or send an email to to ask to be put on the mailing list.

Overview of the Gleaning Program

The Gleaning Program was established in 2003 to help reduce food waste in Nanaimo and area. Volunteer gleaners pick fruit and vegetables from backyards and gardens that would otherwise be wasted.

In 2017, the Gleaning Program had an poor fruit year year and harvested less than most years. Key numbers for 2017:

Sanmiya Photos Oct, 2011 29336 picks

527 volunteer hours

6,113 lbs of produce

117 volunteer gleaners

Local agencies received 15% of the produce that was harvested with the rest going to tree owners and gleaners. Overall 2017 was less successful due to poor weather during fruit tree bloom. This critical pollination time was cool and rainy and did not permit many insect pollinators to fly freely. Let’s hope that 2018 is a much better year. Cross your fingers!

Surplus fruit to share? Don’t let it go to waste!


Share your produce!
If you have (or anticipate having) more fruits, nuts or vegetables than you can use, please call the Gleaning Program. We will do our best to link you with volunteers willing to pick. Advance notice of one to two weeks is requested to allow time to coordinate the picks.

Do you want to help?

If you are a local farmer who wishes to have gleaners harvest surplus vegetables or other crops, please contact the Gleaning Program for more information about how we can support you by providing an income tax receipt and leaving some of the produce with you to sell. We have provided gleaners for peas, blueberries, raspberries and corn.

Contact the Gleaning Program at 250-816-4769 to register your crop.

Become a gleaner!IMG_0231

Volunteer gleaners must be willing to attend one brief orientation and safety session, and join as a member of the Nanaimo Community Gardens Society and Nanaimo Foodshare Society. Once registered, gleaners will be invited on organized picks throughout the season. Please note that most communication is done through email so you will need to have a valid email address that you check frequently.

Orientations are about one hour in length and include a ladder demonstration. We will meet in the gazebo at the Pine St Community Garden located behind the Foodshare Centre at 271 Pine St. Children are welcome to play in the garden while you attend. Dogs must be leashed. When you attend an orientation, please bring your annual membership fee (sliding scale $15-$25) and family and friends if they might want to be involved. All gleaners must have a safety orientation.The earlier you sign up, the better your chances of attending an early pick, such as a cherry pick.

If you can’t make it to one of the orientation dates and you want to glean, please contact the gleaning coordinator and we will work something out. Call 250-816-4769.

2018 Gleaning season information:

Please attend one of the orientation dates below (to be set in mid-March) to join the program. You do not have to pre-register for a session – just show up! Remember to bring your annual membership fee (sliding scale $15-$25) and any friends or family that want to glean with you. All your questions will be answered at these one-hour sessions.

SEPT_121Be dressed for the weather as the orientations are held outside under the gazebo in the Pine St Community Garden behind the Foodshare Centre at 271 Pine St.

2018 Orientation Session Dates:

To Be Determined

The Gleaning Program 2018 is a joint project of:

Nanaimo Foodshare Society
Nanaimo Community Gardens Society

We acknowledge the financial assistance of the Province on British Columbia. This program is also made possible through the work of many dedicated volunteers.

Thank you!

The AGM and volunteer appreciation cake