ANTIOCH, Tenn. (WKRN) — This Thanksgiving, more people in Middle Tennessee have less food on the table, and groups that typically help feed them have faced new challenges to meet the increased need.

The Branch of Nashville has seen a 300% increase in need since COVID-19, however, the food bank’s supply has dwindled with fewer donations coming in.

“Families that are struggling are really struggling,” Melissa Thomas, CEO of The Branch said. “We’ve had to talk lately about whether we need to decrease the number of emergency food boxes we give out because we don’t have enough supply to do that.”

Supply and demand challenges have also impacted the First United Methodist Church of Hendersonville’s 13th annual turkey fry where proceeds go toward purchasing Christmas gifts for children in need.

Volunteers normally fry 240 turkeys, but this year, they cooked 160 due to inflation and supply issues.

“It was when I was buying all these turkeys and the oils and everything else in general, that it really hit me how expensive everything is getting, so I can’t imagine if you were already on the cusp, that you’re really struggling right now,” Mark Ware, who organized the annual turkey fry said.

Because the church had fewer turkeys to sell this year, they didn’t make as much money during the fundraiser.

“We spend every dime we have. We don’t hold anything back, so if we don’t have as much money, we don’t have as many toys, and that hurts because it’s always fun to buy truckloads of toys and this year it’s not going to be as much,” Ware said.

The public can reach out to the First United Methodist Church of Hendersonville at (615) 824-8725 to inquire about how to donate.

To learn how to donate to or volunteer for The Branch of Nashville, click here.