Counties with the highest rate of food insecure children in New York

Written by:
September 13, 2022
Victor Moussa // Shutterstock

Counties with the highest rate of food insecure children in New York

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 New York 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. New York has a child food insecurity rate of 14.6%, which ranks #21 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 New York.

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Gbklyn // Wikimedia Commons

#50. Warren County

- Child food insecurity rate: 12.8% (1,490 total)
--- 3.3% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.6% (6,810 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,919,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.57
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Daniel Case // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Genesee County

- Child food insecurity rate: 12.9% (1,510 total)
--- 3.2% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.7% (6,130 total)
--- 1.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,249,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.29
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Benjamin D. Esham (bdesham) // Wikimedia Commons

#48. Livingston County

- Child food insecurity rate: 12.9% (1,440 total)
--- 3.2% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.4% (5,960 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,271,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.41
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Daniel Case // Wikimedia Commons

#47. Columbia County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.6% (1,410 total)
--- 2.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.6% (5,740 total)
--- 2.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,556,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.85
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Felix Lipov // Shutterstock

#46. Greene County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.6% (1,060 total)
--- 2.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.6% (5,000 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,064,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.81
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Reilchey27 // Wikimedia Commons

#45. Schoharie County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.6% (750 total)
--- 2.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.8% (3,350 total)
--- 1.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,772,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.29
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Andre Carrotflower // Wikimedia Commons

#44. Wayne County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.7% (2,640 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.2% (9,230 total)
--- 1.6% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $4,921,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.31
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Kenneth Sponsler // Shutterstock

#43. Otsego County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.0% (1,330 total)
--- 2.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.0% (6,570 total)
--- 0.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,709,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.51
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UpstateNYer // Wikimedia Commons

#42. Washington County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.1% (1,630 total)
--- 2.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.7% (6,580 total)
--- 1.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $4,237,000
--- Cost per meal: $4.00
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PQK // Shuterstock

#41. Yates County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.2% (800 total)
--- 1.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.3% (2,580 total)
--- 1.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,384,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.33
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Matt H. Wade // Wikimedia Commons

#40. Rensselaer County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.3% (4,430 total)
--- 1.8% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.2% (16,260 total)
--- 1.6% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $9,932,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.79
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Wangkun Jia // Shutterstock

#39. Albany County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.4% (8,120 total)
--- 1.7% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.3% (31,690 total)
--- 1.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $19,357,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.79
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#38. Essex County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.8% (890 total)
--- 1.3% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.6% (3,960 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,377,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.73
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Mwanner // Wikimedia Commons

#37. Orange County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.8% (14,390 total)
--- 1.3% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.4% (35,990 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $21,706,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.75
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PQK // Shuterstock

#36. Cayuga County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.1% (2,280 total)
--- 1.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.4% (8,770 total)
--- 0.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $4,787,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.39
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Daniel Case // Wikimedia Commons

#35. Chenango County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.1% (1,490 total)
--- 1.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.9% (5,630 total)
--- 0.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,790,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.08
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Richard Cavalleri // Shutterstock

#34. Clinton County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.1% (2,170 total)
--- 1.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.9% (9,600 total)
--- 0.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $5,359,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.47
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Stef Ko // Shutterstock

#33. Cortland County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.1% (1,360 total)
--- 1.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.5% (5,460 total)
--- 0.3% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,913,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.31
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marjobani // Wikimedia Commons

#32. Seneca County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.1% (1,030 total)
--- 1.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.7% (4,030 total)
--- 0.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,970,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.04
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Fred Hsu // Wikimedia Commons

#31. Ulster County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.1% (4,750 total)
--- 1.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.3% (20,210 total)
--- 0.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $12,299,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.78
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#30. Lewis County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.2% (920 total)
--- 0.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.0% (2,920 total)
--- 0.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,492,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.17
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#29. Staten Island

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.4% (15,960 total)
--- 0.7% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.1% (48,010 total)
--- 1.7% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $31,445,000
--- Cost per meal: $4.07
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UpstateNYer // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Schenectady County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.4% (5,160 total)
--- 0.7% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.7% (16,560 total)
--- 1.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $9,553,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.58
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Felix Lipov // Shutterstock

#27. Rockland County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.8% (14,510 total)
--- 0.3% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.7% (31,590 total)
--- 2.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $19,260,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.79
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Marduk // Wikimedia Commons

#26. Steuben County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.2% (3,360 total)
--- 0.1% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.9% (11,370 total)
--- 0.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $6,063,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.31
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Doug Kerr from Upstate New York // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Herkimer County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.3% (2,070 total)
--- 0.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.2% (7,530 total)
--- 0.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,912,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.23
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Nina Alizada // Shutterstock

#24. Oneida County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.6% (8,100 total)
--- 0.5% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.8% (26,940 total)
--- 0.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $14,615,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.37
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Lamar Gore/USFWS // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Schuyler County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.9% (580 total)
--- 0.8% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.1% (2,330 total)
--- 1.3% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,187,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.17
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Mihai_Andritoiu // Shutterstock

#22. Niagara County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.6% (7,400 total)
--- 1.5% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.3% (25,870 total)
--- 0.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $13,987,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.36
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littlenySTOCK // Shutterstock

#21. Onondaga County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.6% (17,310 total)
--- 1.5% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.5% (53,290 total)
--- 0.3% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $29,739,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.47
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Jimmy Emerson // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Orleans County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.6% (1,380 total)
--- 1.5% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.9% (4,840 total)
--- 0.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,452,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.15
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P199 // Wikimedia Commons

#19. St. Lawrence County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.7% (3,850 total)
--- 1.6% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.5% (14,660 total)
--- 1.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $7,704,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.26
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Andre Carrotflower // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Allegany County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.8% (1,640 total)
--- 1.7% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.9% (5,970 total)
--- 1.1% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,560,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.70
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#17. Manhattan

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.8% (41,460 total)
--- 1.7% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.6% (220,780 total)
--- 1.8% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $224,281,000
--- Cost per meal: $6.31
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Lvklock // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Chemung County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.2% (3,270 total)
--- 2.1% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.0% (10,960 total)
--- 1.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $5,585,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.17
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Eric Richards // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Sullivan County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.3% (2,930 total)
--- 2.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.5% (8,690 total)
--- 0.3% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $4,907,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.51
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Beyond My Ken // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Fulton County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.4% (1,990 total)
--- 2.3% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.2% (7,040 total)
--- 1.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,747,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.31
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Wangkun Jia // Shutterstock

#13. Jefferson County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.4% (4,940 total)
--- 2.3% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.2% (14,690 total)
--- 1.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $7,670,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.24
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Doug Kerr // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Delaware County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.5% (1,380 total)
--- 2.4% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.6% (5,640 total)
--- 0.8% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,676,000
--- Cost per meal: $4.05
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Canva

#11. Erie County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.5% (34,510 total)
--- 2.4% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.0% (110,390 total)
--- 0.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $63,692,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.58
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Mwanner // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Franklin County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.8% (1,830 total)
--- 2.7% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.4% (6,760 total)
--- 1.6% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,576,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.29
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Pubdog // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Cattaraugus County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.9% (3,230 total)
--- 2.8% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 14.0% (10,710 total)
--- 2.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $5,414,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.14
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Paul Brady Photography // Shutterstock

#8. Monroe County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.9% (29,300 total)
--- 2.8% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.6% (86,040 total)
--- 0.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $48,199,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.48
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Wangkun Jia // Shutterstock

#7. Oswego County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.9% (4,690 total)
--- 2.8% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.3% (15,640 total)
--- 1.5% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $7,931,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.15
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Canva

#6. Broome County

- Child food insecurity rate: 19.4% (7,210 total)
--- 3.3% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.8% (26,490 total)
--- 2.0% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $14,670,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.44
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Andre Carrotflower // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Chautauqua County

- Child food insecurity rate: 19.6% (5,100 total)
--- 3.5% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 14.0% (17,860 total)
--- 2.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $9,563,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.33
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Bjoertvedt // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Queens

- Child food insecurity rate: 20.5% (93,840 total)
--- 4.4% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.1% (274,120 total)
--- 0.3% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $173,083,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.92
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Jwilson855 // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Montgomery County

- Child food insecurity rate: 20.9% (2,360 total)
--- 4.8% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.7% (6,770 total)
--- 1.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,686,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.38
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Victor Moussa // Shutterstock

#2. Brooklyn

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.0% (152,960 total)
--- 9.9% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 15.5% (399,210 total)
--- 3.7% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $273,678,000
--- Cost per meal: $4.26
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Gryffindor // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Bronx

- Child food insecurity rate: 36.3% (128,740 total)
--- 20.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 19.7% (281,040 total)
--- 7.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $167,616,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.70

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