Counties with the highest rate of food insecurity in Arkansas

Written by:
February 5, 2022
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Counties with the highest rate of food insecurity in Arkansas

Every county in the United States is home to people experiencing food insecurity, defined by the nonprofit Feeding America as “a lack of consistent access to enough food for every person in a household to live an active, healthy life.”

The USDA estimates that 89.5% of U.S. households were food secure throughout 2019—that’s 116.0 million people. The COVID-19 pandemic put further strain on households already experiencing food hardship, with Feeding America estimating that 42 million people, or 1 in 8 Americans, may experience food insecurity in 2021. This is a slight improvement from 2020 numbers but still represents an enormous burden for millions of children and adults.

Stacker compiled a list of counties in Arkansas with the highest rate of food insecurity using data from Feeding America. Counties are ranked by highest percent of population with food insecurity as of 2019.

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#50. Crittenden County

- Food insecurity rate: 16.4% (8,000 total)
--- 50.5% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 27.0% (3,590 total)
--- 84.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $4,044,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.96

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Prairie County

- Food insecurity rate: 16.5% (1,350 total)
--- 51.4% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 22.3% (370 total)
--- 52.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $672,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.91

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#48. Cross County

- Food insecurity rate: 16.5% (2,780 total)
--- 51.4% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 20.1% (800 total)
--- 37.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,325,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.79

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#47. Crawford County

- Food insecurity rate: 16.5% (10,370 total)
--- 51.4% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 21.6% (3,340 total)
--- 47.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $4,815,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.72

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Paul Sableman // Wikimedia

#46. Jefferson County

- Food insecurity rate: 16.6% (11,520 total)
--- 52.3% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 28.9% (4,420 total)
--- 97.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $5,812,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.95

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#45. Newton County

- Food insecurity rate: 16.7% (1,310 total)
--- 53.2% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 20.7% (320 total)
--- 41.8% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $631,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.82

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Efy96001 // Wikimedia Commons

#44. White County

- Food insecurity rate: 16.7% (13,180 total)
--- 53.2% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 19.9% (3,670 total)
--- 36.3% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $6,404,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.84

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#43. Cleveland County

- Food insecurity rate: 16.8% (1,370 total)
--- 54.1% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 23.8% (430 total)
--- 63.0% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $691,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.95

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#42. Clark County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.0% (3,800 total)
--- 56.0% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 23.9% (1,020 total)
--- 63.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,960,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.02

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Valis55 // Wikimedia Commons

#41. Independence County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.2% (6,450 total)
--- 57.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 21.6% (1,940 total)
--- 47.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,102,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.81

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#40. Pope County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.2% (10,940 total)
--- 57.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 20.1% (2,930 total)
--- 37.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $5,312,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.84

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#39. Bradley County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.3% (1,890 total)
--- 58.7% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 25.2% (650 total)
--- 72.6% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $922,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.85

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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia

#38. Miller County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.3% (7,530 total)
--- 58.7% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 25.2% (2,610 total)
--- 72.6% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,844,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.99

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Sharon Day // Shutterstock

#37. Garland County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.4% (17,110 total)
--- 59.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 24.3% (4,850 total)
--- 66.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $8,642,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.95

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#36. Lee County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.5% (1,610 total)
--- 60.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 27.7% (460 total)
--- 89.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $772,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.80

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Valis55 // Wikimedia Commons

#35. Pike County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.5% (1,880 total)
--- 60.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 21.1% (490 total)
--- 44.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $933,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.90

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#34. Ouachita County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.6% (4,210 total)
--- 61.5% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 28.8% (1,560 total)
--- 97.3% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,005,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.79

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#33. Hot Spring County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.6% (5,900 total)
--- 61.5% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 22.8% (1,570 total)
--- 56.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,918,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.89

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Brandonrush // Wikicommons

#32. Sebastian County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.6% (22,490 total)
--- 61.5% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 21.5% (6,630 total)
--- 47.3% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $10,742,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.79

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#31. Columbia County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.9% (4,260 total)
--- 64.2% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 27.5% (1,380 total)
--- 88.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,094,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.87

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Thomas R Machnitzki ([email protected]) // Wikimedia Commons

#30. Greene County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.9% (8,050 total)
--- 64.2% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 22.7% (2,510 total)
--- 55.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,642,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.65

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#29. Nevada County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.0% (1,500 total)
--- 65.1% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 28.2% (540 total)
--- 93.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $724,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.82

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Cid.williams // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Conway County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.1% (3,780 total)
--- 66.1% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 24.3% (1,170 total)
--- 66.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,796,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.78

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Ardelta // Wikimedia Commons

#27. St. Francis County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.1% (4,680 total)
--- 66.1% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 28.5% (1,700 total)
--- 95.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,096,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.62

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#26. Marion County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.2% (2,990 total)
--- 67.0% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 23.5% (700 total)
--- 61.0% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,527,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.99

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Valis55 // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Perry County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.3% (1,900 total)
--- 67.9% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 22.7% (530 total)
--- 55.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $995,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.06

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Photolitherland // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Lawrence County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.4% (3,050 total)
--- 68.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 21.8% (810 total)
--- 49.3% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,432,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.75

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NatalieMaynor // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Randolph County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.5% (3,280 total)
--- 69.7% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 22.6% (940 total)
--- 54.8% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,522,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.71

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Logan County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.5% (4,000 total)
--- 69.7% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 24.5% (1,160 total)
--- 67.8% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,882,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.75

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#21. Scott County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.6% (1,930 total)
--- 70.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 22.2% (590 total)
--- 52.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $928,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.81

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Sgerbic // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Izard County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.6% (2,530 total)
--- 70.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 27.1% (660 total)
--- 85.6% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,247,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.88

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#19. Lafayette County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.9% (1,290 total)
--- 73.4% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 30.5% (400 total)
--- 108.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $663,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.01

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Desha County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.1% (2,240 total)
--- 75.2% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 32.0% (960 total)
--- 119.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,102,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.88

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Fulton County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.1% (2,340 total)
--- 75.2% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 24.9% (630 total)
--- 70.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,160,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.90

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Van Buren County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.1% (3,170 total)
--- 75.2% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 25.5% (840 total)
--- 74.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,604,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.96

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Valis55 // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Johnson County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.3% (5,080 total)
--- 77.1% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 23.8% (1,520 total)
--- 63.0% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,456,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.83

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Stone County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.5% (2,430 total)
--- 78.9% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 23.6% (580 total)
--- 61.6% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,202,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.89

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Thomas R Machnitzki ([email protected]) // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Poinsett County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.5% (4,660 total)
--- 78.9% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 26.0% (1,480 total)
--- 78.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,043,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.56

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#12. Mississippi County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.6% (8,240 total)
--- 79.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 28.5% (3,170 total)
--- 95.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,974,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.82

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JERRYE & ROY KLOTZ MD // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Searcy County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.7% (1,560 total)
--- 80.7% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 24.3% (390 total)
--- 66.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $766,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.87

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Fredlyfish4 // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Montgomery County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.8% (1,770 total)
--- 81.7% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 27.0% (440 total)
--- 84.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $890,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.94

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Monroe County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.9% (1,400 total)
--- 82.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 35.1% (520 total)
--- 140.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $645,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.70

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Brandonrush // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Franklin County

- Food insecurity rate: 20.0% (3,540 total)
--- 83.5% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 24.3% (1,030 total)
--- 66.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,687,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.79

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Lauren Shufelberger // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Polk County

- Food insecurity rate: 20.0% (4,020 total)
--- 83.5% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 24.2% (1,130 total)
--- 65.8% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,944,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.83

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Brian Stansberry // Wikimedia Commons

#6. Clay County

- Food insecurity rate: 20.4% (3,040 total)
--- 87.2% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 25.9% (840 total)
--- 77.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,355,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.61

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Cyndy Sims Parr // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Woodruff County

- Food insecurity rate: 20.5% (1,340 total)
--- 88.1% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 31.1% (440 total)
--- 113.0% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $657,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.87

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Valis55 // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Sharp County

- Food insecurity rate: 20.7% (3,540 total)
--- 89.9% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 29.1% (1,050 total)
--- 99.3% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,692,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.80

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#3. Chicot County

- Food insecurity rate: 21.2% (2,250 total)
--- 94.5% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 36.0% (850 total)
--- 146.6% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,111,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.89

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Jma661 // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Jackson County

- Food insecurity rate: 21.5% (3,660 total)
--- 97.2% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 30.9% (1,060 total)
--- 111.6% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,738,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.78

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#1. Phillips County

- Food insecurity rate: 22.7% (4,220 total)
--- 108.3% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 38.6% (1,850 total)
--- 164.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,170,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.01

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