Counties with the highest rate of food insecure children in Nebraska

Written by:
September 13, 2022
Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

Counties with the highest rate of food insecure children in Nebraska

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 5.5 million children lived in food-insecure households in 2021. 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 Nebraska 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 2020. Nebraska has a child food insecurity rate of 13.5%, which ranks #29 highest among all states.

States with the highest rate of food insecure children
#1. Louisiana: 21.5%
#2. New Mexico: 20.5%
#3. Mississippi: 20.4%
#4. Alabama: 19.8%
#5. Arkansas: 19.7%

States with the lowest rate of food insecure children
#1. North Dakota: 8.1%
#2. Massachusetts: 8.8%
#3. New Jersey: 9.0%
#4. Minnesota: 9.3%
#5. New Hampshire: 9.5%

Read on to see where food insecurity is most prevalent in Nebraska.

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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#50. Dawes County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.7% (220 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.8% (850 total)
--- 2.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $420,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Dixon County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.8% (200 total)
--- 2.3% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.4% (530 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $245,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.87
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J. Stephen Conn // Flickr

#48. Antelope County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.9% (210 total)
--- 2.2% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.3% (650 total)
--- 1.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $335,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.20
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Katherine Welles // Shutterstock

#47. Lancaster County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.9% (9,980 total)
--- 2.2% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.6% (33,580 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $17,954,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.32
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#46. Garden County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.0% (60 total)
--- 2.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.6% (200 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $96,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.99
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Jared Winkler // Wikimedia Commons

#45. Kearney County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.0% (230 total)
--- 2.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.8% (650 total)
--- 2.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $355,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.39
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#44. Nance County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.0% (110 total)
--- 2.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.6% (370 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $189,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.17
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Jared Winkler // Wikimedia Commons

#43. Thayer County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.0% (160 total)
--- 2.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.2% (510 total)
--- 1.6% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $252,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Jasperdo // Flickr

#42. Brown County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.2% (90 total)
--- 1.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.6% (280 total)
--- 2.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $141,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#41. Greeley County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.2% (80 total)
--- 1.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.1% (260 total)
--- 0.7% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $122,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.91
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Smallbones // Wikimedia Commons

#40. Lincoln County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.2% (1,190 total)
--- 1.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.7% (3,750 total)
--- 1.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,887,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#39. Nuckolls County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.2% (120 total)
--- 1.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.5% (400 total)
--- 2.3% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $194,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.01
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#38. Hooker County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.4% (20 total)
--- 1.7% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.8% (90 total)
--- 0.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $45,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#37. Banner County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.5% (20 total)
--- 1.6% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 7.9% (50 total)
--- 3.9% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $25,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#36. Grant County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.5% (20 total)
--- 1.6% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.6% (90 total)
--- 0.8% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $45,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Pixabay

#35. Adams County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.6% (1,100 total)
--- 1.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.2% (3,520 total)
--- 0.6% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,705,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.01
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#34. Cheyenne County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.6% (320 total)
--- 1.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.1% (1,140 total)
--- 0.3% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $548,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.99
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#33. Red Willow County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.6% (370 total)
--- 1.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.4% (1,120 total)
--- 1.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $534,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.96
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Canva

#32. Cherry County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.7% (200 total)
--- 1.4% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.7% (620 total)
--- 1.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $312,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#31. Dundy County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.9% (70 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.0% (190 total)
--- 1.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $96,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#30. Nemaha County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.9% (220 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.1% (850 total)
--- 0.3% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $515,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.77
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Jan Uruba // Wikimedia Commons

#29. Saline County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.9% (520 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.3% (1,320 total)
--- 2.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $706,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.32
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Box Butte County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.0% (410 total)
--- 1.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.4% (1,230 total)
--- 0.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $607,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Madison County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.0% (1,330 total)
--- 1.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.1% (3,870 total)
--- 0.7% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,995,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.20
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#26. Merrick County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.0% (260 total)
--- 1.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.7% (920 total)
--- 0.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $431,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.91
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Dodge County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.1% (1,340 total)
--- 1.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.9% (3,990 total)
--- 0.9% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,884,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.93
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Johnson County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.1% (150 total)
--- 1.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.0% (510 total)
--- 1.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $252,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Hayes County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.3% (30 total)
--- 0.8% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.2% (110 total)
--- 0.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $55,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Zack Frank // Shutterstock

#22. Sioux County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.5% (50 total)
--- 0.6% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.4% (120 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $59,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#21. Frontier County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.6% (80 total)
--- 0.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.3% (300 total)
--- 0.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $143,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.96
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Burt County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.8% (230 total)
--- 0.3% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.7% (760 total)
--- 0.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $401,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.27
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JonClee86 // Wikicommons

#19. Douglas County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.8% (22,900 total)
--- 0.3% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.5% (59,440 total)
--- 1.3% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $32,156,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.36
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Gage County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.8% (770 total)
--- 0.3% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.7% (2,730 total)
--- 0.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,351,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Kimball County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.0% (110 total)
--- 0.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.9% (430 total)
--- 0.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $212,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Dawson County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.3% (1,050 total)
--- 0.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.8% (2,310 total)
--- 2.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,101,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.96
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Custer County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.4% (420 total)
--- 0.3% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.5% (1,240 total)
--- 0.3% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $591,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.96
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Richardson County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.4% (280 total)
--- 0.3% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.3% (900 total)
--- 0.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $452,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.12
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Workman // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Otoe County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.5% (640 total)
--- 0.4% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.0% (1,760 total)
--- 0.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,067,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.77
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Zack Frank // Shutterstock

#12. Scotts Bluff County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.5% (1,470 total)
--- 0.4% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.7% (4,180 total)
--- 0.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,063,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Hitchcock County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.1% (120 total)
--- 1.0% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.3% (340 total)
--- 0.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $171,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Jimmy Emerson, DVM // Flickr

#10. Arthur County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.2% (20 total)
--- 1.1% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.3% (60 total)
--- 1.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $30,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Keith County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.2% (280 total)
--- 1.1% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.3% (990 total)
--- 0.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $498,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Brad Mellema // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Hall County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.1% (3,060 total)
--- 2.0% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.2% (6,850 total)
--- 0.6% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,206,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.91
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Franklin County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.3% (100 total)
--- 2.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.0% (390 total)
--- 1.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $189,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.01
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#6. Wheeler County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.4% (20 total)
--- 2.3% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.3% (80 total)
--- 0.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $41,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.20
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Pawnee County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.8% (110 total)
--- 2.7% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.3% (350 total)
--- 1.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $173,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Dakota County

- Child food insecurity rate: 19.3% (1,130 total)
--- 3.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.3% (2,070 total)
--- 1.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $956,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.87
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Thurston County

- Child food insecurity rate: 20.3% (530 total)
--- 4.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 15.7% (1,130 total)
--- 3.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $522,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.87
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Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Sheridan County

- Child food insecurity rate: 22.5% (260 total)
--- 6.4% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 14.5% (750 total)
--- 2.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $370,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
50 / 50
Ammodramus // Wikimedia Commons

#1. McPherson County

- Child food insecurity rate: 22.7% (10 total)
--- 6.6% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.6% (40 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $20,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13

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