Carol Cooper - Fruits of Sherbrooke in Edmonton, AB
Saving urban fruit, giving jobs to people with challenges, teaching classes, and making 13,000 individual fruit snacks for children's nutrition programs: this describes Fruits of Sherbrooke. Carol is a co-founder of this not for profit in Edmonton and it is easy to see that she is a retired social worker.
They started in their community of Sherbrooke 6 years ago trying to find ways to use fruit growing but not being used by homeowners. Her job was to make the jams, jellies, condiments and sauces following our rule that 60 - 100% of all the fruit used must be locally 'rescued'. This limited palette of fruit demanded that she creates her own recipes - and this has been total fun for Carol. The unique flavour combinations are now their identity.
They were still challenged with an abundance of local apples and so they started Fruit Stars where they make apple chips, apple leather and applesauce and package them for snack programs in schools. This accomplishes our mission of getting local food to those who are hungry in their city.
There have been many challenges as a small producer but she doesn't regret one minute. Carol's advice from a Boomer to a Millennial - follow your dreams!!