The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Economic Research Service reported that 10% of households in Massachusetts, or approximately 253,000 households, experience "food insecurity," meaning that they lack consistent access to adequate amounts of nutritious food. This is an increase of 2 percentage points, or about 47,000 households, over the previous year.
Hunger in America
In total 50.2 million Americans, including nearly 17.2 million children, are food insecure. The 2010 report on Household Food Insecurity in the United States paints an alarming picture of the pervasiveness of hunger in the nation.
The findings are in line with The Greater Boston Food Bank's 2010 Hunger Study results, which showed that the number of people visiting a food pantry, soup kitchen or shelter in Massachusetts increased 23% since 2006. The three Feeding America food banks in the Commonwealth are now serving as many as 801,200 people.
"These are distressing numbers that show how much suffering the current economic condition continues to cause. Because unemployment remains persistently high - above 8% or more for more than a year now - the number of struggling families continues to grow right in our Commonwealth," said Catherine D'Amato, president and CEO of The Greater Boston Food Bank.