Okanagan College students process donated apples for hungry kids

Donated apples for hunger

Culinary Arts in Kelowna students are transforming apples into healthy snacks for the community.

The Okanagan Fruit Tree Project provides apple donations that get processed into snacks for the backpacks of local students in need. 

“It definitely wasn’t difficult to fit this project into the curriculum,” said culinary arts instructor Kelsey Oudendag, who identified applesauce as the best item to start with.

Students used it in a variety of applications by peeling, coring and slicing apples to make the sauce as well as into apple chips. They used the sauce in breakfast items such as cookies and granola as well as fruit leather.

“We use the apples in so many different ways, from teaching students how to use tools for slicing and coring to utilizing them in our different subject areas like breakfast, baking and fruit preservation.”

“This is a unique collaboration that builds upon the existing partnership we have with Food for Thought over the past few seasons,” Lucie Bardos, project coordinator for the Okanagan Fruit Tree Project.

“We typically deliver fresh produce directly to Food for Thought for their backpack and breakfast programming. In this case, Okanagan College got involved to help transform the fresh apples into products before the fruit goes to Food for Thought.”

Orchardists and farmers contact the charity (OFTP) and a harvest is organized with the help of volunteers. 

Since the start of COVID-19, Food for Thought has filled nearly 500 backpacks per week while the breakfast program provides nearly 3,000 meals directly to schools.

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