The numbers of people using foodbanks at two major charitable organisations is growing.
The Downtown Community Ministry in Wellington says its foodbank cupboard is bare, after a sudden surge in demand.
The organisation says it usually collects enough food during its appeals to last for several months, but the supplies gathered in the latest campaign have lasted only six weeks.
The Auckland City Mission has also experienced an increase in demand, and is handing out slightly smaller food parcels to make supplies stretch further.
It says families already surviving on low incomes have experienced a drop in earnings because overtime has dried up in the recession.