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Palm Beach County Food Bank struggles to keep warehouse shelves full

CEO says supply shortage 'wreaking havoc' on operations
Palm Beach County Food Bank warehouse November 2021
Posted at 3:13 PM, Nov 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-12 22:43:46-05

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — You can't see it but keeping pace with the holidays and the need in the community has been a challenge inside this warehouse.

"Our goal is just to make sure everybody in Palm Beach County that's food insecure has access to the food they need," said Jaime Kendall, CEO of the Palm Beach County Food Bank.

That will be a daunting task this year without the community's help. Supply chain issues that rippled across the country are being felt on every shelf of the warehouse, where donations are down.

"We've had to purchase a lot more food than we normally do, so that's put an extra burden on us," said Kendall. "In the past three months, we've spent well over $700,000 to keep food coming in the door."

According to the food bank, grocery prices are rising and stores with excess food are lowering their prices to sell and make money to make ends meet rather than donating. On top of that, trucking costs have doubled just to get goods into this warehouse. Even worse, suppliers and manufacturers are grappling with decreasing inventory and higher costs on their end.

It all adds up and eventually trickles down into this nonprofit at a time when food insecurity grows.

"Everybody turns on the news every night and it's all about the supply chain, and here we are at the food bank level trying to make sure everybody has food, and its wreaking havoc with us and our operations," said Kendall.

Financial donations are critical to have food on the table for agencies and families in need this holiday season. Anyone who would like to donate should visit pbcfoodbank.org.

Here's how you donate!

Text "food4families" to 41444 to donate any amount or call 561-364-3245 on Nov. 5, 12 and 19.

Or follow this link to donate online.

The next in-person food donation will be held at Seacoast Bank, 12796 Forest Hill Blvd., Wellington, 33414