Making It in the Bay

Record Inflation Impacting Bay Area Food Banks

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Food banks across the Bay Area are facing more challenges as more people are needing help and rising food prices are making it even harder for them to help everyone.

It was busy Thursday on Edgewater Drive in Oakland, as dozens of organizations from across the Bay Area stop by the Alameda County Community Food Bank to load boxes.

Rafael Linares, with First Presbyterian Church in Oakland, some of the boxes will be distributed to families in need on Saturday.

“You save a lot of money because now the food is very expensive,” he said.

The high food prices are becoming very expensive-- for everyone including food banks.

Supply chain disruptions, higher fuel costs and lower inventory are all contributing to higher prices.

“The reality for us is, we really are in a tough situation,” said Regi Young, Alameda County Community Food Bank Exec. Director. “So last month, some of our core items like green beans and canned tuna, we had to pay $60,000 more than the previous month."

In total, they are dishing out about $ 1 million a month to distribute about four and a half million pounds of food.

"We're trying to absorb a lot of those costs so that our families in need do not have to pay for that product at the store,” Young added.

In comparison, pre-pandemic, they were spending about a quarter of that money for about 2 1/2 million pounds of food.

Employees and volunteers are working around the clock, knowing their service is more important than ever.

"We realize thanksgiving is our biggest distribution time and more than ever because of the pandemic, people are really struggling to put food on the table,” said Wilken Louie of Alameda County Community Food Bank.

Despite all the issues, the workers said that they're positive they will have enough food to distribute throughout the holiday season.

For more information or if you want to donate to the Alameda County Community Food Bank, visit

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