Counties with the highest rate of food insecurity in Rhode Island

Written by:
February 5, 2022
Kenneth C. Zirkel // Wikimedia Commons

Counties with the highest rate of food insecurity in Rhode Island

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 Rhode Island 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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Marcbela (Marc N. Belanger) // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Washington County

- Food insecurity rate: 7.4% (9,360 total)
--- 32.1% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 10.6% (2,260 total)
--- 27.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $6,367,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.98

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Kenneth C. Zirkel // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Bristol County

- Food insecurity rate: 7.6% (3,680 total)
--- 30.3% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 9.0% (830 total)
--- 38.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,092,000
--- Cost per meal: $4.92

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Kenneth C. Zirkel // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Newport County

- Food insecurity rate: 8.6% (7,110 total)
--- 21.1% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 11.7% (1,660 total)
--- 19.9% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $4,652,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.83

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Rhode Island Attorney General // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Kent County

- Food insecurity rate: 8.6% (14,100 total)
--- 21.1% lower than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 12.0% (3,720 total)
--- 17.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $8,467,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.51

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Kenneth C. Zirkel // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Providence County

- Food insecurity rate: 11.0% (69,740 total)
--- 0.9% higher than national average
- Child food insecurity rate: 16.4% (21,600 total)
--- 12.3% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $42,102,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.53

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