Glace Bay Food Bank serves more as Canadian dollar falls

The Glace Bay Food Bank is seeing more new faces every day as the falling Canadian dollar makes the cost of food out of reach for more people.

Increasing food costs for simple items force more to turn to food bank for help

Glace Bay Food Bank co-ordinator Sandra MacPherson says the list of clients is growing almost daily as the falling Canadian dollar leads to increased food prices. (Gary Mansfield/CBC)

The Glace Bay Food Bank is seeing more new faces every day as the falling Canadian dollar makes the cost of food out of reach for more people.

"We're seeing a lot of seniors now who say their money just doesn't go far enough," co-ordinator Sandra MacPherson said. "They're on their pensions and they're coming looking for that help.

"We've seen some more families who are struggling with affordable housing."

MacPherson said prices are now "unbelievable" for simple items such as a can of milk, a box of Kraft Dinner, and fruits and vegetables.

"It's high and if you're on a fixed income, it's really tough."

Watches for sales

The food bank supplements what it receives through Feed Nova Scotia and local donations by buying at local grocery stores, where they are allowed to purchase in bulk when there's a sale. 

"Like Kraft Dinner, we can't buy it at a dollar. We have to wait until a sale comes on at 69 cents," said MacPherson. "Then we buy 20 or so cases and we do that with just about everything."

The soup kitchen that is part of the same operation is also seeing an increase in clients. It serves one hot meal a day and has had a number of regulars for years, including 64-year-old Arthur Berrigan. 

"Not just for the meal every day," he said. "Once a month, you get a (grocery) order and it helps. Keeps me alive."

Berrigan said without the food bank and kitchen, he has no idea how he'd make it. 

"I don't go to the grocery store that much." he said. "Can't afford it."

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