Supplies have dwindled during the coronavirus pandemic, but the Comox Valley Food Bank continues to operate five days a week at McPhee Avenue in Courtenay.
“Donations in the last two weeks have dropped,” president Mitch Moncrieff said Tuesday. “All of our donations flatten out after Christmas. Our main daily donations are from stores.”
The recent trend of stockpiling at grocery stores has cut down on the number of items with expiry dates. Normally, if a retailer such as Superstore has a sale on chicken, for instance, the business will provide the food bank with a few boxes as items near expiry.
Despite the health scare, Moncrieff figures the number of visitors has remained the same in recent weeks.
The CV Food Bank is asking volunteers and patrons with any signs of sickness to not enter the premises for everyone’s safety.
After discussing the issue Sunday, the board initiated a “no touch policy,” and drew a line on the floor three feet from distribution tables.
“They (visitors) tell us what they want, they put a bag or a banana box on the table, and we fill it,” Moncrieff said. “They don’t touch any food. They can go through with some distancing.”
Rather than entering the office, visitors are required to read their identification or to show it to staff members from a distance.
In March, Food Banks Canada conducts its annual HungerCount surveys to provide a snapshot of food bank use across the country. It means asking more questions, which slows the process. Moncrieff said the doors didn’t close until 1 p.m. Monday. Normally, they close around noon.
“The upside is it’s (pandemic) making us examine what we do more closely,” he said.
The Comox Valley Food Bank serves people from Oyster River in the north to Cook Creek in the south, including Hornby and Denman islands. It operates from 9:30 a.m.-noon at #1-1491 McPhee Ave.
A home delivery service is available for those who need it.
FMI: (250) 338-0615 or email@example.com