Thursday, November 15 , 2018, 10:49 pm | Fair 52º


Santa Barbara Foodbank Starts Selling Emergency Food Supply Boxes

Each one costs $59, and includes meals to feed one person for a week, as well as a first aid kit and other items


The Foodbank of Santa Barbara County will start selling compact boxes of emergency food supplies to help the community prepare for disaster, and CEO Erik Talkin said the nonprofit will donate one box to a family in need for every one purchased.

Talkin announced the boxes during this week’s disaster preparedness conference the Foodbank organized, which was attended by dozens of people with local nonprofits and emergency managers.

He said the Foodbank organized the conference, which included a tabletop exercise and workshops, partly as a measure to deepen its relationships that become vital in a disaster.

Having a memorandum of understanding means nothing in the thick of it – it’s about having people willing to take your call in the middle of a crisis, he said.

The idea of emergency food boxes was born out of the Jan. 9 Montecito debris flow, when many people were sheltering in place in their homes for days or even weeks, Talkin said.

Foodbank employees have been developing the boxes for months, testing food and finding a size that is meaningful, he said.

Each one costs $59, and includes meals to feed one person for a week, as well as a first aid kit, whistle/flashlight tool, emergency blanket and face mask.

The food has a shelf life of 25 years – good until 2043 – and just needs water added, not hot water, Talkin said. At 6 pounds, 15 ounces, the box is compact and portable.

Emergency food boxes Click to view larger
The Foodbank of Santa Barbara County emergency boxes include just-add-water meals, a mask and emergency blanket.  (Giana Magnoli / Noozhawk photo)

For every box sold, the Foodbank will give a second one to a family in need.

“It’s an opportunity for us to sing our song as to disaster involvement,” Talkin said.

The boxes become available Sept. 17 by online order, and can be picked up at any of the Foodbank’s warehouse locations.

Meals in the emergency food box include maple brown sugar oatmeal, cheesy broccoli rice, creamy flavored chicken rice, Spanish rice, creamy potato soup, hearty vegetable chicken flavored soup, banana chips, and Morning Moo’s lowfat milk alternative.

September is National Preparedness MonthClick here for more information about how to prepare for disasters and how to sign up for emergency alerts in Santa Barbara County

Noozhawk managing editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Foodbank CEO Erik Talkin shows off emergency food boxes. Click to view larger
CEO Erik Talkin shows off the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County’s emergency food boxes. For every box purchased, the nonprofit will donate one to a family in need.  (Giana Magnoli / Noozhawk photo)

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