Manna Celebrating New Market, Renovated Warehouse This Weekend

Manna Celebrating New Market, Renovated Warehouse This Weekend

Pantry is similar to a grocery store

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Manna's new market in the Fairland area of Silver Spring

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The hunger relief organization Manna Food Center is opening a new food pantry and warehouse this weekend.

The food market will be at 12301 Old Columbia Pike in the Fairland area of Silver Spring. According to a press release, the new center is a “choice pantry” similar to a grocery store, in that recipients can decide what they want.

“It gives people who experience hunger the dignity of choosing their own food throughout the week,” the press release stated.

“Depending on their family size, they’re able to take certain amounts and choose from basic food groups.”

Manna provides food to 32,000 people a year, according to its website. To qualify, recipients must have an income of less than $76,000 for a family of four or $36,000 for a single person.

Manna will dedicate the new 2,500-square-foot store with a ribbon cutting Saturday at 10 a.m. A number of elected officials will be present, including County Executive Marc Elrich and U.S. Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.).

Manna CEO Jackie DeCarlo said that the area of Silver Spring where the new store is has twice the rate of food insecure residents compared to everywhere else in Montgomery County. “Insecure” refers to the idea that people don’t have a stable supply of affordable nutritious food.

On Sunday, Manna is dedicating its newly renovated Gaithersburg warehouse by giving tours to the public starting at 10 a.m., according to its website.

The food bank temporarily moved from its 9311 Gaither Road headquarters so that the warehouse could be upgraded and transformed into a distribution hub, according to its website.

DeCarlo said the two projects cost $2.5 million — $500,00 of which came from the county. The rest, she said, came from state funding, businesses, foundations and individuals.

The upgrades are part of Manna’s Food for All campaign, in which the organization hopes to reach 10,000 more recipients across the county.

Dan Schere can be reached at Daniel.schere@bethesdamagazine.com

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