Capital Campaign: New SB Warehouse

BUILDING RESILIENCE

For a Hunger-Free Tomorrow

For several years –especially since the Hwy 101 closure that followed the 1/9 Debris Flow – the Foodbank has been seeking a new warehouse in south county. With thanks to the County of Santa Barbara and the City of Goleta, over the last year, a committee of current and past Board Members, Foodbank leadership and local experts has explored numerous potential locations.

We’re thrilled to announce that we’ve found a suitable existing warehouse and have entered into a purchase agreement to acquire it! Our Board and leadership’s vision is for this facility to serve our community for years to come. Now we need to finance the purchase and necessary improvements to make the facility fit for purpose with refrigeration, freezer and other needed additions. The Foodbank will apply about $3 million of funds that we have set aside for this purpose. We estimate we’ll need to raise another $15 million to complete the purchase and necessary construction.

SUMMARY CASE FOR A NEW WAREHOUSE IN SANTA BARBARA:

Drastically Inadequate Facility Space

  • Current warehouse is only 9,000 square feet.
  • Can only hold 15% of food required to serve the area.
  • Have to resupply daily. Most food goes to north county facility and is then trucked down.
  • This food must be touched an average of eight times, travel 72 miles and be stored in four different places between the time it is received and the time it reaches our clients.
  • This adds an additional 37,500 miles (and associated emissions) of transport, as well as additional annual expenses of $23,000 in staff time, and $19,000 in fuel costs.
  • We turn away rescued produce: we can only accept 8,000 lbs. of fresh produce per week from the Los Angeles Wholesale Produce Market. With a larger warehouse, we could be receiving 40,000 lbs.
  • Unable to expand or improve current facility due to zoning restrictions and a community plan that designates the site as a future park.

Santa Barbara Unprotected in Case of Disaster

  • Should a disaster close highways 101 and 154, the Foodbank would be unable to provide adequate and fresh food to those in Santa Barbara, Carpinteria, Goleta and Isla Vista.
  • All of the County’s emergency food response organizations, including the Red Cross and Salvation Army, depend on the Foodbank for food in the event of a disaster.
  • In a disaster, our meager supply will be needed for those living the daily disaster of food insecurity, so we really have no emergency food storage in south county.
  • Feeding America estimates 25% of a local population will need food assistance in a disaster, that’s 50,000 people in south county.
  • Lack of disaster food storage is a serious threat to feeding the people who live here:
    • 10,727 low-income children qualify for free and reduced lunch program.
    • Schools will close – many of those students eat breakfast and lunch at school, all of them eat at least one meal at school.
    • Many of Foodbank’s 300 partner agencies will shut down.
    • Many people will be sheltering in place – requiring delivery further stressing operational capacity.
  • Within 6 hours of a major earthquake, we will need to feed 50,000 people who don’t live here:
    • Conservative estimate is that 50,000 people who don’t live in south county will immediately lack access to any food supply.
    • 21,084 commuters from Ventura and North SB County will be trapped in south county.
    • There are 28,880 average daily tourists/visitors (tourists) to south county.

*Feeding America estimates 25% of a local population will need food assistance
in a disaster. That’s 50,000 people.

For more information and to learn how you can help, please contact Daniel Thomas at dthomas@foodbanksbc.org.

Pictures below capture our current SB Warehouse. We can’t wait to upgrade!

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