Ventura County is home to our very first Branch! The branch officially began in 2012. However, the Ventura County story begins way back in 2010 when Martha Penhall, our current County Coordinator, attended her first fruit pick with Food Forward in Bakersfield, CA. She was sold on Food Forward as she found herself immersed in the orange tree canopy surrounded by citrus blossoms. With help from local volunteers, Martha was able to host 1 fruit pick a month in her town of Moorpark. Our Ventura County branch picked 5,132 pounds in 2010, and upped it to 47,115 pounds in 2011, and reached 100,000 lbs in 2012!
In 2012, Food Forward began its partnership with FOOD Share, in Oxnard, to establish an official Food Forward Ventura County branch. Food Forward: Ventura County is now averaging 4 fruit picking events per month. The branch currently has over 300 volunteers, 4 Pick Leaders, and a team of Property Scouts working hard to reduce the amount of food waste in Ventura County and to increase access to fresh produce for those in need.
The extraordinary accomplishments of this new branch over so short a time recently earned Martha and Food Forward a Halo Award by the Carl and Roberta Deutsch Foundation, commemorating excellence in volunteerism.
Sign up to harvest fruit for those in need in Ventura County here!
If you have any questions about our Ventura County Branch, please contact:
Food Forward: Ventura County
4156 Southbank Rd.
Oxnard, CA 93036