Hunger Facts
and Figures

In our day-to-day lives, hunger is often hard to see, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t there. Sadly, both in the United States and around the world, hunger is everywhere.

With the increased hardship children and families have faced since the outbreak of COVID-19, in 2021 it was estimated that as many as 1 in 6 children in the U.S. was food insecure — meaning that they didn’t always know how they would get their next meal.

IN THE UNITED STATES

16.8%

of children under 18 years
of age live in poverty.

One in Six Children

To put it in perspective, that’s

1 in 6

children who live in poverty

COVID Numbers

Food Insecure Households

In April 2020, as families began to struggle with the impact of COVID-19, the percentage of food-insecure households was estimated to be between 22-38%. In contrast, in 2016 only 12.3% of households were food insecure.

SNAP benefits

Food Stamps

As of 2018, 10.7% of families in the U.S. relied on SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) to make ends meet. Nearly half of those households (46.8%) already live below the poverty line. And food stamps don’t go very far. According to data from the Food and Nutrition Service, average monthly household SNAP benefit in fiscal year 2018 was $251. That works out to just over $8 per day.

SNAP benefits can be used to buy groceries, seeds, and plants to grow food, but they cannot be used for vitamins, medicine, prepared or heated food, diapers, cleaning supplies, hygiene items, or toilet paper.

3 out of 4

students qualify for free or reduced-price lunches
under the National School Lunch Program.

School one in four

25

%

of all public schools in 2017-2018
were high-poverty schools.

AROUND THE WORLD

1.2

BILLION

in developing countries live in extreme
poverty, existing on less than $1.90 U.S. per day.

Farmland icon

1.1

BILLION
PEOPLE

in developing countries lack adequate access to water.

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2.6

BILLION
PEOPLE

lack basic sanitation.

One in Nine People

1 in 9

PEOPLE SUFFER FROM HUNGER

THAT'S OVER

820 MILLION

PEOPLE AROUND THE WORLD.

Five Million Children icon

5 MILLION CHILDREN

under the age of 5 die of
malnutrition-related causes every year.

Disease icon

Malnutrition is the single largest
contributor to disease in the world.