Donate your apples, get free cider! Via a London charity that does this for you, and it’s no joke. The Orchard Project is a nationwide charity that started in London. As well as restoring lots of local orchards, volunteers learn to grow and maintain fruit orchards, to bring free fruit to local people.
If you donate apples and pears to spare, they use these windfalls and leftover fruits to make cider, and you get back a share of the profits. Since the project began in 2016, the project has rescued over 32 tonnes of unwanted fruit and turned them into delicious apple juice and cider, while training over 1000 volunteers to make cider, and giving over £12,000 back to the community.
The cider and apple juice is handmade by local volunteers, using a mix of culinary and dessert apples, collected from across the city, then slowly fermented at their cider house in Walthamstow. It’s matured in small batches to produce a refreshing light cider, with a unique taste (as all the apples are different). It’s then sold to small shops in London, with every 3kg apple donation producing one 330ml bottle back to you. Apples donated must be without chemical sprays and handpicked or windfalls (a small bit of bruising is okay).
Also in London, Hawkes Cider is made the same way. This company makes a variety of ciders from donated apples, and the same applies: you get a free bottle of cider for each 3kg donated. Profits are used to help local orchard projects. Search online for apple donation points near you, as this business idea is taking off!