Duluth’s Second Harvest Food Bank purchases new facility for $6 million

Published: Aug. 17, 2022 at 6:34 PM CDT
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DULUTH, MN -- Sometime in the next two years, the Northland’s largest hunger-relief organization will have a new home.

Second Harvest Northern Lakes Food Bank recently purchased the IKONICS building in West Duluth for roughly $6 million.

“We’ve been negotiating a deal for the facility we just purchased,” said Second Harvest Executive Director Shaye Moris. “We’re excited to be able to expand our operations.”

The Food Bank provides supplies to more than 40 different partners around Northern Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin.

“This food bank provides over 7 million pounds of product every year, that’s about 5.6 million meals,” said Moris.

According to Moris, the Food Bank has seen a large number of people suffering from food insecurity due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’re seeing record numbers again at food shelves, and our program. So really, the need is still there,” she said, “this facility kind of outgrew our need for what we were doing.”

The Food Bank had to partner with SuperOne to store roughly 30 pallets of food offsite due to high demand.

Partners like Barry Schull with the Fruit of the Vine Food Shelf, which operates out of the Vineyard Church in Duluth, say it could help them better serve the community.

“They will have larger facilities and more capacity, and so they should be more responsive than ever and have a bigger selection,” he said.

The Food Bank’s new facility will nearly triple its operating space.

On top of the $6 million purchase, the Food Bank will also pay roughly $7 million more to upgrade facilities within their new building, bringing the total to $13 million.

That money was raised through donations and fundraising as well as the sale of their current building.

Second Harvest will lease their old warehouse and continue operations there, while they wait to move into their new building sometime in 2023 or 2024.

“It’s a perfect facility to bring us into our next 20 years,” Moris said.

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