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Fort McMurray Food Bank Can Barely Keep Up With Demand

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Fort McMurray's food bank has been overwhelmed with demand since a series of disasters hit the northern Alberta community.

"We've never really needed a forklift but we're currently unloading upwards of three semis a week," Arianna Johnson, executive director of the Wood Buffalo Food Bank, told Fort McMurray Today.

wood buffalo food bankA worker at the Wood Buffalo Food Bank unloads a semi-truck full of food.

The food bank normally unloads two semi-trucks each year.


Right now, the non-profit is open nine hours each day, but has been forced to close early when it hits its daily cap of 150 hampers.

Johnson told CBC News the organization has given out 4,915 hampers for June and July.

Fort McMurray was already hurting from Alberta's recession when a massive wildfire forced the evacuation of more than 88,000 residents from the area in May. Many homes were destroyed, while smoke damage left others uninhabitable.

fort mcmurray trailer
Deer walk past a trailer park that was destroyed by fire in Fort McMurray. (Photo: Darryl Dyck/Bloomberg via Getty)

This week, Fort McMurray was left in another difficult position after summer storms caused severe flash floods.

Johnson said that since the fire, almost all of the charity's clients have been new — they haven't seen many of their regulars.

"We do worry a little bit about where they are and what's going on for them" she said in an interview with Global News.

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