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With the work being undertaken within the Food Security space in the Latrobe Valley, an initial concept of harvesting fruit from existing community trees developed into a project that would activate homeowners, volunteer fruit pickers and food bank resources alike.

The idea of developing a tree planting program to support the community was raised at the Great Place Pillar Group in late 2018.

At the same time, related suggestions were raised during Health Assembly community consultation and through the Food For All Latrobe Valley program. One suggestion related to the “possibility of planting fruit trees on streets or parks for public use.” Further investigation had identified reluctance to proceed with this concept due to liability concerns.

The project refocused on two possible delivery streams. Apple trees were professionally planted in all Latrobe City Kindergartens across the region to provide easy access to free fruit in the coming years. The second avenue of this project focused on developing a volunteer group to pick unwanted fruit from registered residential premises. 

While this initiative produced wide-spread support. Several key stakeholders within the project withdrew their support due to liability concerns and changes in corporate landscapes. Some aspects of this project concept have been well supported by the Food For All Latrobe Valley project with investigations currently underway looking at running a small town based trial.

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