Agencies in urgent need of baby food

The Everett Food Bank says it urgently needs donations of baby food, such as cereal, jarred food and formula.

Food banks in Marysville and Lynnwood say they could use donations to feed infants, too.

“We’re experiencing an emergency,” said Bill Humphreys, director of basic need services for Volunteers of America, which runs the Everett Food Bank.

The food bank generally relies on donations from the public to stock its shelves with baby food and formula, he said. This week, they discovered the food bank was unusually short of supplies.

“For some reason we’re right to the bottom of the barrel,” he said. “Honestly, I got caught unaware.”

Cash donations and grants are used to buy bulk food, such as beans, rice, oats, meat, fruit and vegetables.

The Everett Food Bank will use money from a city of Everett grant to buy supplies of baby food and formula for the next few days, Humphreys said.

It’s the first time in recent years that the food bank has had to rely on grant money, instead of public donations, for baby food.

The decline in baby food donations comes despite a record-breaking year for the annual letter carrier food drive on May 13. People donated 365,697 pounds of food to food banks in Snohomish County.

Lynnwood’s food bank is nearly out of infant formula and needs donations, said Peg Amarok, administrative director.

“You’d be surprised how many new babies went through” the food bank line with their moms on Wednesday, she said.

The Marysville Community Food Bank needs donations of infant formula, baby food in jars and large diapers, said Leslie McCollough, volunteer director.

Grant money, which helps buy baby food and other supplies for the food bank, “will run out in a couple months and then we’ll be scrambling,” she said.

“Formula is so expensive,” McCollough added. “We’re always in need.”

Reporter Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486 or

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