50 Million Americans Don’t Have Enough Food, USDA Says
November 16, 2010
(ChattahBox U.S. News)—-Government food assistance is growing at such an alarming rate that one in four Americans is enrolled in one of the nation’s 15 federal feeding programs, with 42 million on food stamps and 30 million kids getting free breakfast and lunch, a new USDA report notes. In 2009, almost 50 million Americans were considered “food insecure,” meaning that they either didn’t have enough food or were uncertain of whether they could get enough food to feed their families, ABC News reports.
The USDA researchers attributed the rise in use of federal food programs to the recession, and indicated that many of the food banks have reported serving people who never expected to require assistance to feed their families. In addition, the government predicts “major” food price increases in 2011, ABC notes, leading to questions of whether the number of Americans using food programs will grow even more.
Hunger prevention groups worry about the impact of extended holiday vacations on school children, who often rely on free school meals for breakfast and lunch as the bulk of their daily intake. When schools close, those students must find other resources for meal supplies, ABC reports.