Counties with the highest rate of food insecure children in Massachusetts

Written by:
April 29, 2022
Real Window Creative // Shutterstock

Counties with the highest rate of food insecure children in Massachusetts

Food insecurity is a widespread problem in the United States, with people experiencing food insecurity in every single county in the nation. The nonprofit Feeding America describes food insecurity as “a lack of consistent access to enough food for every person in a household to live an active, healthy life.”

Food insecurity hits children particularly hard. The USDA estimates that more than 5.3 million children lived in food-insecure households in 2019. The COVID-19 pandemic put further strain on households already experiencing food hardship, with Feeding America estimating that 13 million children may experience food insecurity in 2021—that’s one in six children. Not having consistent access to enough food can affect cognitive abilities, overall health, moods, and attention spans—not to mention the psychological effects of living with scarcity.

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

You may also like: Counties with the worst commutes in Massachusetts

1 / 14
Jameslwoodward // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Norfolk County

- Child food insecurity rate: 4.6%
--- Number of food insecure children: 6,810
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 73.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 27.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 5.9%
2 / 14
Jellymuffin40 // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Middlesex County

- Child food insecurity rate: 4.9%
--- Number of food insecure children: 15,580
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 90.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 10.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 6.4%
3 / 14
John Phelan // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Hampshire County

- Child food insecurity rate: 7.7%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,850
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 79.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 21.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 8.0%
4 / 14
Schlitzer90 // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Plymouth County

- Child food insecurity rate: 7.7%
--- Number of food insecure children: 8,640
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 66.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 34.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 6.1%
5 / 14
Jwgetchell // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Dukes County

- Child food insecurity rate: 8.2%
--- Number of food insecure children: 260
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 89.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 11.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 7.4%

You may also like: Counties with the most college graduates in Massachusetts

6 / 14
Bobak // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Essex County

- Child food insecurity rate: 8.4%
--- Number of food insecure children: 14,150
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 91.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 9.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 7.6%
7 / 14
Daderot // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Worcester County

- Child food insecurity rate: 8.8%
--- Number of food insecure children: 15,380
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 77.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 23.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 8.2%
8 / 14
thisisbossi // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Nantucket County

- Child food insecurity rate: 9.5%
--- Number of food insecure children: 220
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 72.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 28.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 7.4%
9 / 14
Wangkun Jia // Shutterstock

#6. Barnstable County

- Child food insecurity rate: 9.6%
--- Number of food insecure children: 3,110
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 79.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 21.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 7.1%
10 / 14
AlexiusHoratius // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Franklin County

- Child food insecurity rate: 10.2%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,260
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 80.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 20.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 9.1%

You may also like: Best counties to retire to in Massachusetts

11 / 14
Marcbela (Marc N. Belanger) // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Bristol County

- Child food insecurity rate: 12.1%
--- Number of food insecure children: 14,060
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 79.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 22.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 9.8%
12 / 14
Protophobic // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Berkshire County

- Child food insecurity rate: 12.3%
--- Number of food insecure children: 2,660
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 71.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 29.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 9.8%
13 / 14
Sean Pavone // Shutterstock

#2. Suffolk County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.2%
--- Number of food insecure children: 19,000
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 68.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 32.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 10.6%
14 / 14
Real Window Creative // Shutterstock

#1. Hampden County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.2%
--- Number of food insecure children: 15,410
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 84.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 16.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 10.9%

Trending Now