Banyoles and the Can Xapes restaurant make jam with the orange trees in the streets

The Banyoles City Council and the Can Xapes restaurant in Cornellà del Terri, in Pla de l'Estany (Girona) have prepared a hundred jars of bitter orange jam made with the fruits they collect from the trees in the street.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
01 April 2024 Monday 17:05
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Banyoles and the Can Xapes restaurant make jam with the orange trees in the streets

The Banyoles City Council and the Can Xapes restaurant in Cornellà del Terri, in Pla de l'Estany (Girona) have prepared a hundred jars of bitter orange jam made with the fruits they collect from the trees in the street.

It is a social initiative, those responsible for collecting them are users of a center with people with disabilities and those who prepare them are young people at risk of social exclusion.

800 kilos of fruit have been used from the three tons that are collected annually from the trees that exist on the public roads of Banyoles.

Every year the brigades collect the fruits between January and February. The Banyoles City Council, until now, distributed the oranges among the neighbors who wanted them and also among some entities that took the opportunity to make jam. However, every year many kilos of fruit are thrown away because it is not used and spoils.

This year, the local government has decided to launch a pilot plan to make more use and reduce food waste. On the one hand, it has given about 400 kilos to a social entity to make jam and distribute it to people in vulnerable situations. On the other hand, it has used another 400 kilos to carry out a "kilometer zero" project with a social nature.

The users of the Puig center are people with physical, intellectual or mental disabilities and they are in charge of the gardening work in Banyoles. This year they have also been in charge of collecting the bitter oranges produced by the fruit trees found in the streets of the municipality. Of the 3 tons produced by these trees, they have separated 400 kg to make a jam together with young people at risk of social exclusion who take training courses at the Can Xapes restaurant in Cornellà del Terri.

These 400 kilos were collected between January and February and later users of other services in the Can Puig center went to the Can Xapes restaurant where they participated with the twenty young people who are in training courses to make the jam with the collected bitter oranges. It is a "100% natural" jam, as the restaurant's chef, Lluc Quintana, explains, since 70% of the jam is orange, 20% sugar and the remaining 10% water.

Quintana assures that a "very decent and quality" product has come out despite the work that has gone into making the jam. They had to remove all the seeds that the fruit had, something common due to the fact that it is a street tree and not treated as an agricultural production tree.

In any case, the chef warns that it is a "gastronomic jam more designed to pair with meat" than to put on toast for breakfast. The reason is that bitter orange has a "very powerful" flavor, but Lluc Quintana believes that it could be a perfect occasion to promote jams outside of the usual uses, such as breakfast.

The packaging, in glass jars that go inside a paper bag, has also been carried out by the users of the Puig center. This allows us to "close the circle" of producing a product with a very marked social character, as pointed out by the councilor for environmental policies of Banyoles, Albert Tubert.

The local government is very satisfied with the result of this pilot test. At the moment they have obtained a hundred jars of jam that they will use for institutional uses, as gifts for visitors and other similar cases.