New cold room keeping food fresh at the food bank

The Campbell River Foodbank executive and board members with city councillor Rob Kerr celebrating the grand opening of the new cold room at the food bank.

The power bill will be smaller and the produce and baked goods will last longer thanks to the new cold room at the Campbell River Food Bank.

In February City Council granted $20,000 to the food banks to use to construct the 16 by 16 foot cold room. It has been up and running for the past five weeks but the food bank held the official grand opening with the staff and board on Tuesday afternoon.

“Thank you to the city,” said Debbie Willis, manager.

The cold room was stocked with food donated through a Memorandum of Understanding with Superstore. The grocery store is donating their unsalable produce, dairy, meat and baked goods. If they don’t get enough donations, the food bank purchases what their clients need.

Through partnerships with 17 local agencies, none of the food goes to waste. Representatives from soup kitchens, the Salvation Army and other organizations come to pick up supplies once a week.

Unfortunately now that the fresh produce is fully stocked, the non-perishable items are taking a hit, things like salad dressing, mustard and peanut butter are in short supply.

“Our reserves are down,” Willis said. “It’s not like we don’t have the funding, it is the things that we don’t buy.”