Disruptions in supply chains affecting food banks ahead of the holidays


BATON ROUGE, La (BRPROUD) — As the holiday season approaches, disruptions in supply chains and rising prices have made holiday shopping a long and expensive process, and local charities are also not immune to the rise in costs.

It’s a classic case of supply and demand. Labor shortages are slowing down the production and delivery of products, so the cost is going up. “There are shortages all across the country and the bigger issue for us is going to be the increased demand we’re seeing,” says CEO of the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank, Mike Manning. He adds that the pandemic has only increased demand, “people get government assistance, but that is not going to go as far as it did a few months ago, so they’re going to be looking to us for more help.”

The Food Bank expects costs to go up as we get further into the winter months. “We’re going to have to still heat and cool this facility, which is a fairly large cost to us, so it’s really going to be increasing costs that we’re going to have to face to be able to do our jobs,” says Manning. 

What the Food Bank lacks in supply, they make up for in community support. “One of the things we’ve been very blessed with, our volunteer list has just been phenomenal, and we just need it to continue to get us through,” says Manning. According to Manning, as people prepare for Thanksgiving and think about what they are thankful for, they are more likely to help those less fortunate during this time of year. 

However, with the surge in prices, community support may not be enough this year. “Unless there’s an increase in supply, those prices are going to continue to go up, especially through the winter months,” says Manning. So they are looking for donations and volunteers more than ever, “you can donate your time by coming to volunteer, you can donate food or you can donate money. Those are the three things that keep us afloat and keep us working,” says Manning.

For information on how you can volunteer, click here.

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