General Updates

Hunger in America 2014: The results are in

Sep 02, 2014

Hunger in America 2014 is Feeding America’s sixth extensive study of the charitable food assistance network in the United States since 1993. The national Feeding America report and our local Foodbank report are now available for download on the Foodbank website. 

The results of this study are informed, at the local level, by 91% of our network participating in the agency survey and more than 100 visits to agencies to survey clients.

Together, our network serves an estimated 263,200 unique clients annually. During the survey period, more than 500 clients shared their stories and experiences with our data collectors. From their responses, we now know that:

  • 67% of client households reported that they had to choose between paying for food and utilities in the past 12 months.
  • Only 57% of client households currently receive benefits through SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program).
  • 81% of clients reported buying cheapest food available regardless of health, even if they knew it wasn’t the healthiest option for their family as their most common coping strategy.
  • 66% of client households chose between paying for food and paying for medicine or medical care at least once in the past 12 months; 31% faced this choice every month.
  • 45% of families wiat to come to the food program until they run out of food.

Clients heavily rely on our agency network to make ends meet for their family. The data about our agency network is extremely important as we continue to meet the challenge of serving more clients in need.

From the agency data, we have learned:

  • 68% of our agencies have no paid staff.
  • 85% of our agencies provide nutrition education information via fliers or writer materials.
  • 29% of our agencies provide some sort of SNAP-related assistance.
  • More than 60% of the food distributed by our network comes from the Foodbank.
  • 79% of our agencies said no longer receiving food from the Foodbank would have a major impact on their program.

We understand that the circumstances of agencies and clients can vary, partly due to geography. For the first time, we now have access to county-specific data for each county served by our Foodbank. While less county specific information is available due to smaller sample size, this data will prove invaluable as we look toward improved services to clients and agencies in all of our eight county service area.

To know that more than 260,000 different people come through the doors of our network is truly a testament to the collaboration between the Foodbank and our more than 500 member agency programs. It also reveals that our vision of a community free from hunger is far from being realized. This data gives us the power to advocate for public policies that support hunger-relief, increase credibility around donor requests and, most importantly, raise awareness for hunger within the community.

For more information, please contact Katie Carver, Programs Coordinator, at or 330.535.6900 ext. 112.