Local cable TV channel show to feature Portland Fruit Tree Project where half of harvest goes to food banks
Saturday, January 5, 2013 - 4:48 pm

WCKN-TV will air a Peak Moment TV program on the Portland Fruit Tree Project (PFTP), Monday, Jan. 7 and Tuesday, Jan. 8 at 7 p.m.

Host Janaia Donaldson takes a look at the project, a grassroots gleaning organization where volunteers share in the harvest and half of the harvest goes to food banks and other agencies serving low-income people.

“We look forward to a time when we’re really able to harvest all of the fruit trees in the city that aren’t being fully utilized,” envisions Katy Kolker, founder and executive director of Portland Fruit Tree Project. Volunteer groups harvest trees whose fruit would otherwise go to waste.

Landowners register their fruit trees and notify PFTP just before prime harvest time. The organization then coordinates volunteers for a harvest party and provides the equipment. The project went from harvesting 8,000 pounds of fruit in 2008 to three times that in 2010.

Other PFTP programs include a tree stewardship program that prunes and cares for registered trees in wintertime, tree scouts who identify potential trees for the program and an orchard being planted on city land. With over 500 trees in their registry, and about as many volunteers, they share thousands of pounds of fruit with the community each season.

To learn more about the tree project visit www.portlandfruit.org.

Now in its fourth year, the Peak Moment TV program airs every week at 7 p.m. on Monday and Tuesday on WCKN, Time Warner Channel 30. Peak Moment explores locally reliant living. The programs are underwritten locally by The Center for Excellence in Communication at Clarkson University and the Seymour Family of Potsdam.

Upcoming programs include “Solving the Environmental Crises - We Can Do It!,” Jan. 14 and Jan. 15; “Revolutionize the Food System,” Jan. 21 and Jan. 22; and “ Simplicity, Joy and Social Change,” Jan. 28 and Jan. 29.

All Peak Moment TV programs are available on the internet at www.wordpress.peakmoment.tv/conversations/.

In addition, more than 80 Peak Moment TV shows are now available on DVDs that can be borrowed from the Potsdam Public Library.