CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A Charlotte-based food bank received a major delivery ahead of the holiday season. The delivery comes at time to re-stock the shelves at hundreds of local food pantries and feed thousands of people in the Charlotte area.
Five tractor trailers dropped off an estimated 150,000 pounds of food at Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina located on Spratt Street in Charlotte.
"Because here's the reality, without food donors, there would be no food bank, there would be no partner agency, there would be nobody getting fed because the food wouldn't be there and available, explained Kay Carter, CEO of Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina.
The food bank is celebrating its 40th year of service, and hunger is at an all-time high due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"When we first realized what was going on, we ordered as much food as we could possibly order," Carter said. "We ordered more food than we could possibly pay for. Because, I knew it was going to be a problem, or I felt like it was going to be a problem. And had we not ordered that food ahead of time, and trusted the community was going to support us and rise to the occasion. I think we would have run out of food at the beginning."
The warehouse is a food source for 800 emergency pantries, soup kitchens, and shelters along with senior programs and low-income daycares across 24 counties in the Carolinas. The food bank serves 14 counties in North Carolina and 10 in South Carolina.
A food industry partner said their one truck had at least 75,000 pounds of protein. Carter says their one focus is on providing healthy meals to the people they serve.
"We want a certain number of proteins, a certain number of fruits, a certain number of vegetables, a certain number of grains," Carter said. "That's the way we design the boxes, and we supplement that with fresh produce, milk, and meat and other things."
The food bank anticipates ten more truckloads of food by Thanksgiving.