ELLSWORTH, Maine (AP) — A Maine nonprofit group is working with blueberry farmers to cut down food waste and provide fruit to food pantries in the state.
Healthy Acadia, based in Ellsworth, will work with the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry to prepare family-sized packages of frozen wild blueberries using berries donated by Down East Maine farms, state officials said. The agriculture department said it has received a nearly $38,000 grant toward the work.
Healthy Acadia will work with farmers to harvest and process berries from fields that would otherwise not be utilized, the department said. The packages will reach more than two dozen food pantries in the Down East area this fall.
The project is especially important for food banks because “nutritious fresh and especially frozen local produce is consistently in short supply,” Healthy Acadia’s Washington County food programs manager Regina Grabrovac said.