Robert Maxwell
Alake’s Pecans
Savannah, Ga.

Georgia has long held the crown as the nation’s top pecan producer; in 2012 alone the state cranked out 100 million pounds of the South’s favorite pie ingredient. Maxwell harvests pecans in Savannah’s backyards and sells the nuts at farmers markets and to local restaurants.

Why we chose these nuts:

ga_postMaxwell is harnessing and distributing a source of food that might otherwise go to waste. He works with Savannah residents who have pecan trees on their property, offering to extract the nuts for free. “In a large portion of the west side of town, a great deal of the pecan trees weren’t being utilized,” says Maxwell. “[The residents] were allowing the pecans to rot, they were throwing them away.” Maxwell has also planted his own pecan trees in a local orchard.

In Savannah, money really does grow on trees:

Says Maxwell: “Almost anywhere you go in Savannah, you’re going to find someone who has a pecan tree in their backyard.”

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