Oregon Food Bank helping Oregonians facing food insecurity

One of the quiet struggles for many Oregonians that can fly under the radar is food insecurity.
Published: Jan. 9, 2023 at 6:39 AM PST
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PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV) - The FOX 12 Hunger Free Project enters the new year as we find new challenges and old ones too, for a lot of Oregonians. One of the quiet struggles that can fly under the radar is food insecurity.

According to the Oregon Food Bank, right now roughly one in 10 Oregonians is facing food insecurity, with 1.5 million expected to seek food assistance this year alone.

In the warehouse at the Oregon Food Bank, the ingredients that make up a meal are in constant motion, from the backs of trucks to the shelf and then back out the door. Food that is increasingly in short supply.

“The truth is that there isn’t quite enough food. We are continually searching for and looking for food. Food flies out of here,” said Susannah Morgan, CEO of Oregon Food Bank.

The four million pounds of food currently on warehouse shelves will be gone in just a couple weeks. Restocking those shelves has become a challenge.

“We are short about six to eight million pounds a month right now that we are filling in through various sources, including community support,” Morgan said.

Support that comes in the form of community food drives and donations, with donations by far the most efficient kind of support.

“We buy food by the truckload. So, for every dollar that is donated, we can acquire three meals worth of food for our community,” said Morgan.

This month, the FOX 12 Hunger Free Project will be partnering with the food bank and Fred Meyer, allowing customers to round up to the next dollar on their purchases, with the difference going toward feeding the community.

With the lingering effects of the pandemic and sky-high inflation driving food prices through the roof, roughly double the number of Oregon families are looking for food assistance compared to what the state saw just a couple years ago.

“The truth is that hunger can happen to any of us and all of us. Sixty percent of people in America will experience a year in poverty in their life. Fifty percent of people in America will ask for food assistance at some point in their life. So this isn’t ‘them,’ this is ‘us,’” said Morgan.

If you’re interested in helping out the efforts at the Oregon Food Bank, they say the most efficient way to do that is a donation.

Find more information about the FOX 12 Hunger Free Project, click here.