Mid-Ohio Food Collective experiencing record demands after last week’s outages

Mid-Ohio Food Collective experiencing record demands after last week’s outages

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Central Ohio’s largest food bank is experiencing record high demand after last week’s power outages.

“We’re an emergency food system, we’re building the infrastructure and the network to be there for that. And then you layer another emergency, like hundreds of thousands of people losing power on top, and of course, it’s going to put a real strain on people’s food budgets,” said Mike Hochron, senior vice president of communications with the Mid-Ohio Food Collective.

Hochron says the Mid-Ohio Food Collective serves around 70,000 families a month in Franklin County alone.

Now, that number has grown to close to 80,000. With families recovering from last week’s power issues, he says thousands more are looking to restock their fridges.

“I was fortunate enough to be able to go to the grocery store and replace it, but a lot of people don’t have the wherewithal to do that,” Hochron said.

This includes Tatyana Ryan, a Columbus resident, who says on top of having to get food, the power outages left her in a tight spot.

“It scared me a little bit, because I’m like the heat is terrible out here, and I have asthma, so that power outage really threw me off, and it took away from my health condition a lot,” Ryan said.

Ryan says if it wasn’t for the collective, her budget would’ve taken a massive hit and left her vulnerable to many other expenses.

“The Mid-Ohio Food Bank being here makes it easier on us, especially with the electric going up, the gas prices going up, this gives us extra opportunities to get groceries,” said Ryan.