USDA Study: Mapping food insecurity in the U.S. & the chance for lower food prices in 2024

According to the Economic Resource Agency study, food insecurity has changed widely in the last three years and varied regionally

Recent data from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture’s (USDA) Economic Research Service (ERS) reveals that 11.2 percent of Americans faced food insecurity. USDA’s ERS tracks food insecurity in U.S. households through its annual Census Bureau survey.

A map Included in the release estimating food insecurity rates across the company showed results that varied widely between 2020 to 2022, ranging from 6.2 percent in New Hampshire to 16.6 percent in Arkansas. The map also highlighted the regional disparities of the issue, with 17 states reporting statistically lower rates than the national average.

Additionally, the USDA also anticipates a potential decline in grocery store food prices for 2024. USDA Economist Megan Sweitzer forecast a decrease of 0.6 percent, marking the first annual drop in grocery store food prices in a few years. Despite the optimistic outlook, the range of possibilities for grocery store food prices spans from a five-percent decrease to a 4.5-percent increase.

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