nb-ben-macmichael-food-bank

West End Food Bank manager Ben MacMichael says volunteers are handing out the produce as quickly as possible. (Tori Weldon/CBC)

The West End Food Bank in Moncton is losing up to half of its produce because the air conditioning is broken and there is no money for repairs.

Ben MacMichael, who manages the food bank located in the basement of Uplands Baptist Church on Salisbury Road, says the problem came with the summer heat.

"We kind of jimmy-rigged a cold room that we keep all our produce in and our air conditioner has died on us. And it's really affected how long we can store produce, especially in these hot humid days," he said.

The produce order, meant to serve about 160 families, comes in on Thursdays and volunteers hand it out as quickly as possible, said MacMichael.

"To get through the weekend I always cross my fingers and hope that the produce is still good to hand out on Monday," he said.

Food bank client and volunteer Kim Perry says she appreciates receiving nutritious food.

"A lot of us are on low income and set budgets so that's one of our last things we get, even on our grocery lists, because it is so expensive to buy," she said.

MacMichael says most of the rotten fruit and vegetables are being used as compost for the food bank's garden.

But he would prefer to see fresh produce go to families in need.