During the first few years of existence, the Second Harvest served Lorain County and distributed surplus commodities from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Second Harvest became an affiliate of Feeding America, formerly America's Second Harvest in 1985. At the same time the organization was successful in gaining funding as an agency of the United Way of Greater Lorain County.
In 1986 Second Harvest was granted exempt status as a charity under section 501(c)3 of the IRS code and expanded to a regional service area including both Huron and Erie counties.
By 1990 Second Harvest had outgrown its location and relocated to the City of Amherst. As the need within the community continued to rise, Second Harvest made a commitment to begin an aggressive campaign to gather and distribute food and other resources.
In order to more accurately reflect the service to the community the name of County Cupboard was officially changed to Second Harvest Food Bank of North Central Ohio in 1995. Two years later Second Harvest's service area was expanded to include Crawford County, bringing the total number of counties served to four.
Second Harvest continued to see tremendous growth in food donations but also in the need within the region. A capital campaign was implemented to purchase land and construct a facility to meet additional warehouse and refrigerated storage space.
With the successful completion of the capital campaign the Second Harvest Food Bank of North Central Ohio relocated to the Deer Trail Lane facility located in Lorain.