Mountain House tries to keep pace with virus-prep demands

Coronavirus

The Albany-based business is one of the largest freeze-dried meal companies in the nation

ALBANY, Ore. (KOIN) — An Oregon company is seeing business skyrocket as the coronavirus spreads in the United States. It’s a major manufacturer of freeze-dried food that is struggling to keep up with demand.

At Mountain House in Albany, Oregon, one of the largest freeze-dried meal companies in the nation, staff is working furiously to keep up demand in the wake of the new virus coming to the west coast.

Mountain House warehouse. The Albany-based company produces freeze-dried food. March 6, 2020 (KOIN)

“It’s not business as usual,” said Josh Wark of Mountain House. “A lot of our online orders just through mountainhouse.com are backed up because we’ve seen [a] 1000% increase.”

The company has ramped up production using staff from other departments to help. They started seeing the pike in demand last month, as reports started coming out about the coronavirus in Washington, Oregon, and California. People are stocking up in case they need to quarantine at home for a couple of weeks, or are worried about going out to their local grocery store.

“A lot of it is fear by consumers who feel like they need to prepare for coronavirus in their communities,” said Wark.

Continuing Coverage on the Coronavirus

As Mountain House works to keep up with what they expect will only be a continuing increase in demand, they are are also offering suggestions to customers as to what else they can do to have prepared meals ready at home.

“We have created kit builders so you can print out a piece of paper for a specific retailer that has all the products they carry,” said Wark. “You can take the list and go in and make your own emergency kit.”

The freeze-dried food, also known as meals ready to eat (MREs), stays good for decades.

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