In the first week since COVID-19 was designated a pandemic, requests for food pantries skyrocketed across the United States. Requests for home-delivered meals more than tripled in the same time period, said a Brown School researcher who tracks calls to the national 2-1-1 helpline.
As fuel prices soar, food prices are beginning to creep up to crisis levels most recently seen in 2007. “Coupled with the financial crisis, high food prices can take a significant toll on nutrition, especially in developing countries,” says Lora Iannotti, PhD. “The same consequences can be true for wealthier countries, as households opt for less expensive, poor quality foods. Hidden hunger is a problem across the globe.”
Many Americans are faced with the fear of going hungry.Most Americans don’t think they’ll ever be faced with the question of how they will get their next meal, but a recent study co-authored by a social welfare expert at Washington University in St. Louis shows that at least 42 percent of the U.S. population will deal with food insecurity during their lifetime. “Food insecurity goes beyond the fear of going hungry,” explains Mark R. Rank, Ph.D., the Herbert S. Hadley Professor of Social Welfare at the university’s George Warren Brown School of Social Work. “Food insecurity means that people are unable to provide themselves and their families nutritionally adequate food on a regular basis.