Saskatchewan

New foods appear as new immigrants frequent Regina Food Bank

Regina Food Bank options grow to meet client needs.

Food Bank CEO says items like lentils are now a big part of their offer

Lentils can be whipped up quickly to make many healthy, affordable dishes. (CBC)

It's all about variety at the Regina Food Bank.

These days, that variety includes lots of lentils.

For many new immigrants, beans and lentils are a food staple. But for a long time, lentils were not on the shelves.

Food Bank CEO Steve Compton says that's changed. Lentils are now so popular, it can be hard to keep them stocked. Thanks to partnerships with Alliance Grain Traders, Farm Credit Canada and donations from other new immigrants, they have a steady supply. 

"We wanted to introduce something that is really good for you," said Compton. "[something] locally grown and put some great nutrition in the hampers we're providing."

Not all of the Food Bank users know what to do with the lentils though. As a result, recipe cards for affordable meals that include lentils are handed out to users and cooking classes have even been launched.

Compton says the best part of having things like lentils becoming such a big part of their offering is that the Foob Bank is giving its users something that is very affordable and extremely high in nutritional value.

"Lentils taste good and they're good for you" he says.

Later, Morning Edition host Sheila Coles will speak with Food Bank staff about some of the new foods on their shelves and how they are helping their clients learn how to prepare them. 

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