Counties with the highest rate of food insecurity in Colorado

Written by:
February 5, 2022
Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

Counties with the highest rate of food insecurity in Colorado

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 Colorado 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. Pitkin County

- Food insecurity rate: 8.7% (1,560 total)
--- 20.2% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 8.8% (250 total)
--- 39.7% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $995,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.73

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Dsdugan // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Clear Creek County

- Food insecurity rate: 8.8% (830 total)
--- 19.3% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 9.8% (150 total)
--- 32.9% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $521,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.67

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Bdearthco // Wikimedia Commons

#48. Adams County

- Food insecurity rate: 8.8% (44,230 total)
--- 19.3% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 11.6% (15,780 total)
--- 20.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $24,779,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.28

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#47. La Plata County

- Food insecurity rate: 9.1% (5,050 total)
--- 16.5% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 10.6% (1,130 total)
--- 27.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,459,000
--- Cost per meal: $4.01

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Maciej Bledowski // Shutterstock

#46. Boulder County

- Food insecurity rate: 9.2% (29,610 total)
--- 15.6% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 8.6% (5,360 total)
--- 41.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $20,384,000
--- Cost per meal: $4.03

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#45. Routt County

- Food insecurity rate: 9.4% (2,350 total)
--- 13.8% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 9.2% (420 total)
--- 37.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,766,000
--- Cost per meal: $4.40

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#44. Kit Carson County

- Food insecurity rate: 9.5% (700 total)
--- 12.8% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 11.1% (200 total)
--- 24.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $359,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.00

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#43. Morgan County

- Food insecurity rate: 9.5% (2,710 total)
--- 12.8% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 11.8% (880 total)
--- 19.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,379,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.98

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David Shankbone // Wikimedia Commons

#42. Teller County

- Food insecurity rate: 9.6% (2,350 total)
--- 11.9% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 12.5% (540 total)
--- 14.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,418,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.53

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Citycommunications // Wikicommons

#41. Larimer County

- Food insecurity rate: 9.8% (33,690 total)
--- 10.1% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 10.2% (7,000 total)
--- 30.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $20,546,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.57

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#40. Cheyenne County

- Food insecurity rate: 9.9% (200 total)
--- 9.2% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 10.8% (70 total)
--- 26.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $103,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.01

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Ken L. from Las Vegas, Nevada, USA // Wikimedia Commons

#39. Ouray County

- Food insecurity rate: 9.9% (480 total)
--- 9.2% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 11.0% (80 total)
--- 24.7% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $298,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.63

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The Greater Southwestern Exploration Company from Long Beach, California, United States // Wikimedia Commons

#38. Gunnison County

- Food insecurity rate: 10.0% (1,680 total)
--- 8.3% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 8.2% (240 total)
--- 43.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,030,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.59

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JERRYE AND ROY KLOTZ MD // Wikimedia Commons

#37. San Juan County

- Food insecurity rate: 10.4% (60 total)
--- 4.6% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 17.8% (10 total)
--- 21.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $39,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.84

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Milan Suvajac // Wikimedia Commons

#36. Archuleta County

- Food insecurity rate: 10.4% (1,380 total)
--- 4.6% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 13.3% (310 total)
--- 8.9% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $792,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.36

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Robert Corby // Wikimedia Commons

#35. El Paso County

- Food insecurity rate: 10.4% (72,750 total)
--- 4.6% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 13.8% (23,410 total)
--- 5.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $41,683,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.35

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#34. Mineral County

- Food insecurity rate: 10.5% (90 total)
--- 3.7% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 16.6% (20 total)
--- 13.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $58,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.75

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#33. Washington County

- Food insecurity rate: 10.5% (510 total)
--- 3.7% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 13.8% (150 total)
--- 5.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $296,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.39

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JERREYE AND ROYKLOTZ MD // Wikimedia Commons

#32. San Miguel County

- Food insecurity rate: 10.6% (850 total)
--- 2.8% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 10.2% (150 total)
--- 30.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $481,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.31

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#31. Chaffee County

- Food insecurity rate: 10.6% (2,080 total)
--- 2.8% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 13.4% (400 total)
--- 8.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,236,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.48

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f11photo // Shutterstock

#30. Denver County

- Food insecurity rate: 10.7% (75,240 total)
--- 1.8% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 12.8% (17,860 total)
--- 12.3% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $48,166,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.74

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#29. Rio Blanco County

- Food insecurity rate: 11.0% (700 total)
--- 0.9% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 13.7% (210 total)
--- 6.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $420,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.51

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Yuma County

- Food insecurity rate: 11.0% (1,100 total)
--- 0.9% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 13.6% (360 total)
--- 6.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $561,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.99

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Acutemi // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Logan County

- Food insecurity rate: 11.0% (2,470 total)
--- 0.9% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 13.7% (630 total)
--- 6.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,258,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.98

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#26. Custer County

- Food insecurity rate: 11.1% (530 total)
--- 1.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 19.4% (140 total)
--- 32.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $278,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Kiowa County

- Food insecurity rate: 11.2% (170 total)
--- 2.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 14.7% (60 total)
--- 0.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $87,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.00

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Daniel Schwen // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Lake County

- Food insecurity rate: 11.2% (870 total)
--- 2.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 11.8% (170 total)
--- 19.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $591,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.98

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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Lincoln County

- Food insecurity rate: 11.9% (660 total)
--- 9.2% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 15.9% (180 total)
--- 8.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $401,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.56

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Jeffrey Beall from Colorado, USA // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Montrose County

- Food insecurity rate: 12.3% (5,130 total)
--- 12.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 16.7% (1,520 total)
--- 14.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,124,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.56

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#21. Prowers County

- Food insecurity rate: 12.4% (1,490 total)
--- 13.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 15.1% (460 total)
--- 3.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $752,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.95

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Acroterion // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Dolores County

- Food insecurity rate: 12.5% (230 total)
--- 14.7% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 17.9% (70 total)
--- 22.6% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $144,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.66

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Eleaf // Wikimedia Commons

#19. Mesa County

- Food insecurity rate: 12.5% (18,870 total)
--- 14.7% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 16.8% (5,540 total)
--- 15.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $10,607,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.29

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Saguache County

- Food insecurity rate: 12.8% (840 total)
--- 17.4% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 18.4% (260 total)
--- 26.0% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $496,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.46

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RandieCraft // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Moffat County

- Food insecurity rate: 12.9% (1,690 total)
--- 18.3% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 15.8% (530 total)
--- 8.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,040,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.60

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Conejos County

- Food insecurity rate: 13.3% (1,080 total)
--- 22.0% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 20.6% (450 total)
--- 41.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $627,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.40

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Fremont County

- Food insecurity rate: 13.6% (6,420 total)
--- 24.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 20.3% (1,520 total)
--- 39.0% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,548,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.23

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Calvin Beale // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Sedgwick County

- Food insecurity rate: 13.8% (320 total)
--- 26.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 20.2% (120 total)
--- 38.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $172,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.14

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Rio Grande County

- Food insecurity rate: 13.8% (1,550 total)
--- 26.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 17.9% (470 total)
--- 22.6% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $913,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.44

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Montezuma County

- Food insecurity rate: 13.8% (3,600 total)
--- 26.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 19.4% (1,100 total)
--- 32.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,986,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.23

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#11. Hinsdale County

- Food insecurity rate: 14.0% (120 total)
--- 28.4% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 16.6% (20 total)
--- 13.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $79,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.85

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John Wark // Wikicommons

#10. Pueblo County

- Food insecurity rate: 14.0% (23,230 total)
--- 28.4% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 19.6% (7,360 total)
--- 34.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $12,006,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.02

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Huerfano County

- Food insecurity rate: 14.4% (960 total)
--- 32.1% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 21.3% (230 total)
--- 45.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $516,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.14

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Originalgum // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Delta County

- Food insecurity rate: 14.4% (4,410 total)
--- 32.1% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 20.5% (1,240 total)
--- 40.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,460,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.26

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Las Animas County

- Food insecurity rate: 14.5% (2,070 total)
--- 33.0% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 18.8% (470 total)
--- 28.8% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,124,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.18

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Milan Suvajac // Wikimedia Commons

#6. Alamosa County

- Food insecurity rate: 14.5% (2,340 total)
--- 33.0% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 17.9% (700 total)
--- 22.6% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,339,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.35

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Baca County

- Food insecurity rate: 14.8% (530 total)
--- 35.8% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 19.2% (140 total)
--- 31.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $252,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.78

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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Otero County

- Food insecurity rate: 16.4% (2,990 total)
--- 50.5% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 21.6% (950 total)
--- 47.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,543,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.02

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Costilla County

- Food insecurity rate: 17.4% (650 total)
--- 59.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 25.7% (180 total)
--- 76.0% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $380,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.42

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Jeffrey Beall // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Crowley County

- Food insecurity rate: 18.6% (1,070 total)
--- 70.6% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 24.7% (180 total)
--- 69.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $612,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.35

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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Bent County

- Food insecurity rate: 19.4% (1,130 total)
--- 78.0% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 26.0% (230 total)
--- 78.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $590,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.05

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