A Self-Serve Fruit Rescuing Model – Fruit Connect

fruit connect video

Fruit Connect is an online tool that connects fruit growers and fruit pickers for the purpose of harvesting excess fruit. The tool relies on fruit owners and fruit pickers to coordinate and arrange their own fruit picks, without the direct involvement of Fruit Share.

create a pickpick listing screen shot

Fruit Share created Fruit Connect, thanks to a grant from the Canadian Internet Registration Authority’s Community Investment Program and the development work of Tactica Interactive, in order to address user concerns about flexibility, timeliness and convenience of scheduling fruit picks and operational concerns about  the cost and labor involved in coordinating all harvests ourselves. For more perspective on that, check out this video on Fruit Connect.

login fruit connect

We used Fruit Connect for the first time in 2016. Overall, Fruit Connect worked great. Of course there were plenty of learning opportunities as we all figured out how to navigate a new system. With plenty of feedback, a few modifications and great ideas for how we can support users better, we’re looking forward to even better years ahead.

In general, here are some benefits and drawbacks of a self-serve model.

Benefits

To Fruit Pickers & Owners

  • greater flexibility for pickers and owners to arrange picks that are convenient for them
  • instant posting of fruit – no waiting for Fruit Share to process incoming harvest requests
  • no limits as to how many postings go up at any time
  • fruit owners can add, change or delete information instantly as needed
  • fruit owners and pickers can communicate directly with each other about picks or scheduling changes
  • fruit owners and pickers can provide feedback about picks
  • information can be accessed at any time from any device

To Fruit Share

  • endless number of harvests can be posted at any time
  • a manageable workload for staff/volunteers
  • reduced labor costs
  • reduced funding requirements/grant writing
  • reduced stress at managing multiple harvests
  • ability to focus on promoting the value and use of local fruit to encourage more involvement by more people

Drawbacks

To Fruit Pickers & Owners

  • requires extra communication and planning by pickers and owners
  • fruit owners must manage their own fruit
  • no one instantly available to help troubleshoot

To Fruit Share

  • loss of control and intimate knowledge of who’s picking what
  • collect less information as this model is dependent on the goodwill of pickers and owners to provide feedback
  • reduced engagement and feeling part of a community

Want to know more? Contact us at info@fruitshare.ca.  If you write during the off-season, it may take a few days for us to receive your email, but we will touch base as soon as we can.