Counties with the highest rate of food insecure children in Wisconsin

Written by:
September 13, 2022
compujeramey // Flickr

Counties with the highest rate of food insecure children in Wisconsin

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 Wisconsin 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. Wisconsin has a child food insecurity rate of 12.6%, which ranks #36 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 Wisconsin.

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Yinan Chen // Wikimedia Commons

#50. Walworth County

- Child food insecurity rate: 12.6% (2,690 total)
--- 3.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 7.3% (7,540 total)
--- 4.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,967,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.27
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Lincoln County

- Child food insecurity rate: 12.9% (660 total)
--- 3.2% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.2% (2,280 total)
--- 3.6% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,144,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.12
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Jon Roanhaus // Wikimedia Commons

#48. Trempealeau County

- Child food insecurity rate: 12.9% (950 total)
--- 3.2% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 7.6% (2,230 total)
--- 4.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,148,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.20
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#47. Fond du Lac County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.1% (2,870 total)
--- 3.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 7.7% (7,870 total)
--- 4.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $4,234,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.34
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Corey Coyle // Wikimedia Commons

#46. Grant County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.1% (1,400 total)
--- 3.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.8% (4,540 total)
--- 3.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,244,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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TheCatalyst31 // Wikimedia Commons

#45. Oconto County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.1% (1,000 total)
--- 3.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.0% (3,030 total)
--- 3.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,526,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Creative Commons

#44. Winnebago County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.2% (4,620 total)
--- 2.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.4% (14,320 total)
--- 3.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $7,830,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.40
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Chris Rand//Wikicommons

#43. Brown County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.3% (8,320 total)
--- 2.8% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.1% (21,220 total)
--- 3.7% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $11,167,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.27
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Jeff the quiet // Wikimedia Commons

#42. Clark County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.4% (1,380 total)
--- 2.7% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 7.9% (2,720 total)
--- 3.9% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,433,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.27
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Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikimedia Commons

#41. Chippewa County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.6% (1,940 total)
--- 2.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.4% (5,400 total)
--- 3.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,671,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Jonathunder // Wikimedia Commons

#40. Manitowoc County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.7% (2,230 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.1% (6,380 total)
--- 3.7% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,309,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.22
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#39. Oneida County

- Child food insecurity rate: 13.7% (850 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.4% (2,970 total)
--- 3.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,460,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.05
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Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikimedia Commons

#38. Pepin County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.0% (210 total)
--- 2.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.4% (610 total)
--- 3.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $315,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.21
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Wineinger // Wikimedia Commons

#37. Monroe County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.1% (1,640 total)
--- 2.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.5% (3,930 total)
--- 3.3% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,916,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.03
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self // Wikimedia Commons

#36. Waupaca County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.1% (1,470 total)
--- 2.0% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.3% (4,250 total)
--- 3.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,216,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.24
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Jonathunder // Wikimedia Commons

#35. Buffalo County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.2% (380 total)
--- 1.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.8% (1,160 total)
--- 3.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $597,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.20
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Jimmy Emerson // Wikimedia Commons

#34. Florence County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.2% (90 total)
--- 1.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.0% (430 total)
--- 1.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $226,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.27
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#33. Vernon County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.2% (1,140 total)
--- 1.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.4% (2,880 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,492,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.22
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bogdanstepniak // Wikimedia Commons

#32. Sauk County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.4% (2,110 total)
--- 1.7% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.0% (5,780 total)
--- 2.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,966,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.19
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123dieinafire // Wikimedia Commons

#31. Polk County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.6% (1,330 total)
--- 1.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.8% (3,820 total)
--- 3.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,053,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.34
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Wtimmers // Wikimedia Commons

#30. Door County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.8% (670 total)
--- 1.3% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.0% (2,220 total)
--- 3.8% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,297,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.63
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#29. Shawano County

- Child food insecurity rate: 14.9% (1,310 total)
--- 1.2% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.9% (3,630 total)
--- 2.9% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,701,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.91
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Corey Coyle // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Richland County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.0% (560 total)
--- 1.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.4% (1,640 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $830,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.14
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TheCatalyst31 // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Wood County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.2% (2,400 total)
--- 0.9% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.4% (6,860 total)
--- 2.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $3,617,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.27
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#26. Waushara County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.4% (680 total)
--- 0.7% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 8.6% (2,100 total)
--- 3.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,075,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.18
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Appraiser // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Barron County

- Child food insecurity rate: 15.6% (1,530 total)
--- 0.5% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.2% (4,160 total)
--- 2.6% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,145,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.20
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Marquette County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.0% (480 total)
--- 0.1% lower than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.7% (1,490 total)
--- 2.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $763,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.18
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Green Lake County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.2% (680 total)
--- 0.1% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.3% (1,750 total)
--- 2.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $896,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.18
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Jeff the quiet // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Rusk County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.7% (480 total)
--- 0.6% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.9% (1,390 total)
--- 1.9% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $688,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Bjoertvedt // Wikimedia Commons

#21. Washburn County

- Child food insecurity rate: 16.9% (500 total)
--- 0.8% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.2% (1,610 total)
--- 1.6% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $830,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.20
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Keith Cooper // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Kenosha County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.3% (6,680 total)
--- 1.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.1% (15,440 total)
--- 2.7% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $7,997,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.22
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Jimmy Emerson // Wikimedia Commons

#19. Crawford County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.4% (560 total)
--- 1.3% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.4% (1,670 total)
--- 1.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $825,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.07
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Visit Beloit // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Rock County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.4% (6,550 total)
--- 1.3% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.7% (15,810 total)
--- 2.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $8,159,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.21
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TheCatalyst31 // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Vilas County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.4% (630 total)
--- 1.3% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.9% (2,160 total)
--- 1.9% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,237,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.56
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Nfarmakes // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Douglas County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.5% (1,500 total)
--- 1.4% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.3% (4,930 total)
--- 0.5% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,392,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.01
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Jeff the quiet // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Langlade County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.6% (660 total)
--- 1.5% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.4% (1,990 total)
--- 1.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $999,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.12
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Jackson County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.7% (790 total)
--- 1.6% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.8% (2,220 total)
--- 1.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,117,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.12
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Billertl // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Price County

- Child food insecurity rate: 17.7% (400 total)
--- 1.6% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.2% (1,360 total)
--- 1.6% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $654,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.99
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Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Marinette County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.1% (1,380 total)
--- 2.0% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 10.7% (4,330 total)
--- 1.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $2,071,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.97
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Nathanthiel // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Juneau County

- Child food insecurity rate: 18.6% (990 total)
--- 2.5% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.4% (3,030 total)
--- 0.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,781,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.65
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gillfoto // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Racine County

- Child food insecurity rate: 19.3% (8,760 total)
--- 3.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 9.2% (17,950 total)
--- 2.6% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $9,394,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.25
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Dls4832 // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Bayfield County

- Child food insecurity rate: 19.9% (520 total)
--- 3.8% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.1% (1,670 total)
--- 0.7% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $810,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.01
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Foreverwiser // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Sawyer County

- Child food insecurity rate: 20.2% (630 total)
--- 4.1% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.6% (1,910 total)
--- 0.2% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $985,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.20
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Ashland County

- Child food insecurity rate: 20.3% (690 total)
--- 4.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 12.7% (1,960 total)
--- 0.9% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $951,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.01
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Dramsey57 // Wikimedia Commons

#6. Burnett County

- Child food insecurity rate: 20.3% (550 total)
--- 4.2% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.4% (1,760 total)
--- 0.4% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $865,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.05
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Adams County

- Child food insecurity rate: 21.5% (640 total)
--- 5.4% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.7% (2,370 total)
--- 0.1% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $1,195,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.13
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Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Iron County

- Child food insecurity rate: 22.6% (190 total)
--- 6.5% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.2% (750 total)
--- 1.4% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $429,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.56
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Forest County

- Child food insecurity rate: 22.9% (410 total)
--- 6.8% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 13.8% (1,250 total)
--- 2.0% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $614,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.05
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compujeramey // Flickr

#2. Milwaukee County

- Child food insecurity rate: 25.5% (57,980 total)
--- 9.4% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 11.8% (111,910 total)
--- 0.0% lower than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $58,971,000
--- Cost per meal: $3.27
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Royalbroil // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Menominee County

- Child food insecurity rate: 34.4% (510 total)
--- 18.3% higher than national average
- Food insecurity rate: 20.0% (920 total)
--- 8.2% higher than national average
- Annual food budget shortfall: $431,000
--- Cost per meal: $2.91

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