The Santa Cruz Fruit Tree Project promotes urban agriculture, builds community, and reduces waste by harvesting surplus fruit, hosting food processing workshops, and supporting the propagation and cultivation of fruit trees.
The Santa Cruz Fruit Tree Project strives towards an agriculture that is sustainable, equitable, and community building. We envision a future with fruit trees and shrubs in residential yards, along sidewalks, and in public parks throughout the County. By harvesting existing surplus, rehabilitating neglected trees, planting new trees and orchards, and modeling fruit preservation methods, we are creating the basis for a Santa Cruz County self-sufficient in fruit production.
We envision a world in which all people have access to fresh healthy fruit, and to the resources and skills necessary to participate in its cultivation, without any need for dangerous pesticides or harsh working conditions. We aim for our network to bring people together in the cultivation, harvest, and processing of tree fruits, building community and sharing knowledge through fun and productive events. As we grow beyond reducing waste towards generating abundance, we enable people to produce and share in that abundance, rather than buying food as a commodity.
Our History and Organization:
Inspired by similar projects across Canada and in the US, the Santa Cruz Fruit Tree Project began organizing harvests and workshops in the summer of 2010. By 2012 we were hosting more than 30 events a year, involving hundreds of participants, and saving tons of fruit from going to waste. 2013 saw our first large food festivals, drawing as many as 250 people, and in 2015 we broke ground on our first community orchard. For more information on our programs, click here.
The Santa Cruz Fruit Tree Project is a program of The Santa Cruz Hub For Sustainable Living, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. A truly grassroots effort, the project is run on a shoestring budget, relying on mostly volunteer labor, while also aspiring to fund a half-time staff position.