Rural Food Insecurity: Research Brief and Report

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Share Our Strength and Feeding America partnered on a qualitative research study and broader report examining food insecurity in rural communities across the United States.

Overview

Food insecurity affects 1 in 7 children in the United States.  However, food security is slightly higher in rural areas than in urban areas: 16 percent in rural areas versus 13% in urban areas in 2017.    Rural communities are more likely to experience persistent poverty and have also been slower to recover from the Great Recession.   

Share Our Strength and Feeding America partnered with a team of researchers from six universities, led by North Carolina State University, on an in-depth qualitative study to explore what makes it easier or harder for families in rural areas to provide food for their kids. The study is the first to provide an in-depth exploration of the experiences of food insecurity in six rural counties across the United States.  This qualitative study involved more than 150 interviews with families in six states.    The Rural Food Insecurity Qualitative Research Brief has details on the study design and findings.

Share Our Strength and Feeding America also published a joint report that broadly examines the overlooked crisis of children living with the threat of hunger in rural America.  The Child Hunger in Rural America Report includes statistics on poverty gleaned from secondary sources, highlights from our qualitative research focused on interviews with rural families, and learnings from the 2019 Rural Child Hunger Summit.  

Share Our Strength's rural initiatives are funded in part by C&S Wholesale Grocers and the Arby's Foundation.