Rising food prices and supply issues impacting local Grand Marais food shelf
Photo by Aaron Doucett on Unsplash

Rising food prices and supply issues impacting local Grand Marais food shelf

Strolling the aisles of a grocery store can be nearly as painful an experience as filling up your gas tank nowadays.

It’s no secret that in addition to rising gas prices, the cost of produce, meat, and nonperishables has increased significantly. In 2022, food prices are predicted to increase by 7% to 8%, ultimately exceeding historical averages. 

WTIP’s Kalli Hawkins spoke with Gwen Lenz, a longtime volunteer with the Grand Marais food shelf, to learn how the rising food prices and current supply issues are impacting the local food shelf. 

Lenz explains that the food shelf assists an average of 80 adults each month. However, during May, the food shelf saw an increase in adults needing food assistance. 

“We had 115 adults. That was a high number in our calculations. So that’s on the rise,” Lenz said.

In addition, Lenz said that the current global supply issues had impacted the availability of certain food items, such as crackers, juice, and adult cereal.

While the food shelf currently lacks certain items, it does offer a handful of fun and unique items on the ‘grab shelf.’ Lenz said that individuals can often find interesting ingredients or items to spice up an old recipe or introduce a new menu item into the routine.

Lenz shared that the Grand Marais food shelf relies on a truck delivery from Second Harvest Northern Lakes Food Bank in Duluth, Minn. However, she shared that she is very thankful for the support and generosity of the Cook County community. The donations from the local community help to expand the variety of products available to those in need.

“The generosity of this community is just sometimes overwhelming,” Lenz said.

If individuals are interested in donating to the Grand Marais food shelf, Lenz said they could call her at 218-387-9860 or leave bags of food at her front door, located at 303 8th Avenue West, Grand Marais, MN 55604.

WTIP’s Kalli Hawkins spoke with Gwen Lenz, a Grand Marais food shelf volunteer. Audio from the conversation below.