The State of America's Children® 2020

Child Hunger and Nutrition

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The State of America’s Children 2020 – Child Hunger and Nutrition Tables2020-02-19T12:30:09-05:00

Table 10: Child Hunger and Obesity, 2017

Children Living in Food Insecure Householdsa Children Ages 10-17 Overweight or Obesec
Number Percent State Rankb Percent State Rankd
Alabama 243,880 22.3% 45 33.2% 39
Alaska 34,690 18.7 34 23.8 5
Arizona 348,550 21.3 43 24.1 7
Arkansas 167,440 23.6 49 26.9 16
California 1,638,430 18.1 29 30.1 27
Colorado 177,360 14.0 7 27.7 20
Connecticut 115,240 15.5 12 20.7 1
Delaware 34,750 17.0 20 28.9 23
District of Columbia 26,450 21.2 35.6
Florida 854,880 20.4 41 36.2 46
Georgia 503,370 20.0 38 32.7 35
Hawaii 53,540 17.5 26 30.4 28
Idaho 69,920 15.8 14 22.6 3
Illinois 453,260 15.7 13 34.1 42
Indiana 273,380 17.4 23 25.9 13
Iowa 111,520 15.3 10 33.2 39
Kansas 130,210 18.3 30 32.1 34
Kentucky 186,660 18.4 32 40.2 49
Louisiana 255,640 23.0 48 28.0 21
Maine 47,020 18.5 33 29.5 26
Maryland 204,660 15.2 9 35.9 45
Massachusetts 159,950 11.7 2 25.9 13
Michigan 345,130 15.9 15 33.1 37
Minnesota 163,310 12.6 4 24.9 9
Mississippi 163,530 22.9 47 41.0 50
Missouri 243,110 17.5 26 26.0 15
Montana 36,910 16.1 17 27.6 18
Nebraska 82,370 17.4 23 28.5 22
Nevada 136,800 20.0 38 27.5 17
New Hampshire 31,640 12.3 3 25.1 10
New Jersey 260,340 13.2 5 34.9 44
New Mexico 118,030 24.1 50 33.8 41
New York 732,300 17.6 28 31.1 30
North Carolina 461,630 20.1 40 30.4 28
North Dakota 16,900 9.8 1 21.8 2
Ohio 510,030 19.6 37 31.6 33
Oklahoma 213,720 22.2 44 36.9 47
Oregon 165,290 18.9 35 23.5 4
Pennsylvania 437,340 16.4 18 29.0 24
Rhode Island 35,760 17.3 21 31.4 31
South Carolina 202,110 18.3 30 33.1 37
South Dakota 34,970 16.4 18 24.0 6
Tennessee 285,770 18.9 35 37.6 48
Texas 1,658,680 22.5 46 31.5 32
Utah 135,940 14.7 8 25.5 11
Vermont 18,760 15.9 15 32.8 36
Virginia 247,470 13.2 5 27.6 18
Washington 284,760 17.3 21 24.6 8
West Virginia 76,970 20.6 42 34.7 43
Wisconsin 197,290 15.4 11 25.8 12
Wyoming 23,960 17.4 23 29.1 25
United States 12,540,000 17.0% 30.7%

a Food-insecure households are households with children that had difficulty meeting basic food needs for adults, children or both.

b States are ranked 1-50 with 1 meaning the lowest percent of children living in food-insecure households and 50 meaning the highest percent of children living in food-insecure households.

c Overweight is defined as BMI-for-age between the 85th and 95th percentile; obese is defined as BMI-for-age greater than or equal to the 95th percentile.

d States are ranked 1-50 with 1 meaning the lowest percent of children that are overweight or obese and 50 meaning the highest percent of children that are overweight or obese.

Sources: 2019. “Map the Meal Gap 2019: A Report on County and Congressional District Food Insecurity and County Food Cost in the United States in 2017.” Feeding America. https://www.feedingamerica.org/sites/default/files/2019-05/2017-map-the-meal-gap-full.pdf; 2017 National Survey of Children’s Health. 2018. “Indicator 1.4a: Weight Status (BMI) in 3 categories, Age 10-17 Years.” Data Resource Center for Child and Adolescent Health. https://www.childhealthdata.org/browse/survey/allstates?q=6472.

Table 11: Average Monthly Number of Children Participating in SNAP and WIC

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), FY2018 Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), FY2019a
As a Percent of: Number of:
Number All Childrenb All SNAP Participants All Participants Infants Children Under 5 As a Percent of Children Under 5
Alabama 347,000 31.8% 46.3% 115,410 31,411 56,127 19.1%
Alaska 37,000 20.1 41.0 15,978 3,631 8,647 16.3
Arizona 389,000 23.7 47.3 127,498 33,274 65,409 15.0
Arkansas 172,000 24.5 47.2 67,231 19,933 30,040 15.8
California 1,901,000 21.1 49.5 929,173 197,317 527,801 21.6
Colorado 203,000 16.0 45.7 81,736 18,873 43,598 12.9
Connecticut 136,000 18.5 35.8 45,767 12,189 23,166 12.6
Delaware 59,000 29.0 43.8 16,358 4,534 8,020 14.6
District of Columbia 37,000 29.0 33.5 11,844 3,514 5,244 11.5
Florida 1,228,000 29.0 40.4 429,378 107,952 217,958 19.1
Georgia 721,000 28.8 47.8 202,915 57,267 93,625 14.2
Hawaii 62,000 20.4 38.7 25,415 6,205 13,295 15.2
Idaho 74,000 16.6 47.4 31,000 7,390 16,315 14.0
Illinois 775,000 27.1 43.3 182,341 52,095 86,501 11.4
Indiana 288,000 18.4 47.5 138,611 35,443 70,738 16.9
Iowa 144,000 19.7 43.4 58,064 13,959 30,943 15.6
Kansas 95,000 13.5 45.0 48,536 12,002 25,410 13.4
Kentucky 239,000 23.7 39.9 94,296 26,122 46,105 16.7
Louisiana 401,000 36.6 46.8 103,170 31,764 44,346 14.4
Maine 55,000 22.0 35.3 17,355 4,138 9,578 14.9
Maryland 252,000 18.8 39.6 122,569 29,934 63,446 17.4
Massachusetts 265,000 19.4 34.9 103,315 22,807 57,846 16.1
Michigan 470,000 21.7 37.6 205,364 51,630 109,190 19.1
Minnesota 186,000 14.3 44.7 100,123 22,578 55,580 15.6
Mississippi 244,000 34.6 48.6 78,457 22,878 37,147 20.0
Missouri 319,000 23.2 45.3 106,733 30,430 49,032 13.2
Montana 44,000 19.2 39.3 15,754 3,814 8,512 13.6
Nebraska 81,000 17.0 48.9 33,516 7,909 18,074 13.6
Nevada 184,000 26.7 42.5 57,513 14,251 29,977 16.1
New Hampshire 35,000 13.6 41.1 12,163 2,639 7,016 11.0
New Jersey 331,000 16.9 44.1 134,936 32,525 70,305 13.6
New Mexico 190,000 39.4 42.7 37,538 9,382 19,103 15.4
New York 1,006,000 24.7 37.0 378,859 89,623 201,163 17.6
North Carolina 441,000 19.2 41.1 206,788 53,672 102,381 16.8
North Dakota 22,000 12.3 43.0 10,662 2,474 5,865 10.7
Ohio 579,000 22.3 41.6 192,574 63,679 82,895 11.9
Oklahoma 262,000 27.4 46.4 66,620 17,571 32,864 12.6
Oregon 198,000 22.7 32.4 81,226 16,783 46,577 19.9
Pennsylvania 629,000 23.7 35.2 202,167 52,169 105,331 15.0
Rhode Island 50,000 24.4 32.8 17,962 4,431 9,717 17.9
South Carolina 302,000 27.3 46.9 84,596 26,070 36,565 12.5
South Dakota 43,000 19.8 49.1 14,896 3,686 8,065 13.0
Tennessee 414,000 27.5 43.6 112,155 34,463 47,981 11.8
Texas 2,035,000 27.5 54.2 681,555 178,938 315,825 15.6
Utah 95,000 10.2 51.6 43,646 10,424 22,946 9.1
Vermont 23,000 19.8 32.4 11,321 2,114 6,848 23.1
Virginia 323,000 17.3 45.4 109,469 30,113 52,658 10.3
Washington 296,000 17.8 34.3 135,297 28,503 76,958 16.6
West Virginia 112,000 30.8 35.7 32,674 8,884 16,123 16.9
Wisconsin 260,000 20.4 41.2 87,666 21,199 47,845 14.3
Wyoming 13,000 9.6 46.1 7,603 1,779 4,027 11.2
United States 17,067,000 23.3% 43.6% 6,227,793 1,576,363 3,170,722 16.0%

a Average monthly participation data from October 2018 to June 2019 as of January 2020. All data are preliminary and subject to revision. Excludes participation from American Indian tribal organizations.

b Calculations made by the Children’s Defense Fund based on the annual estimates of the resident population on July 1, 2017.

c Calculations made by the Children’s Defense Fund based on the annual estimates of the resident population on July 1, 2018.

Sources: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. 2019. “Characteristics of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Households: Fiscal Year 2018,” Table B.14. https://fns-prod.azureedge.net/sites/default/files/resource-files/Characteristics2018.pdf; U.S. Department of Agriculture. 2019. WIC Program Data. “Monthly Data-State Level Participation by Category and Program Costs – FY 2019 (Preliminary).” https://www.fns.usda.gov/pd/wic-program; U.S. Census Bureau. 2019. “Annual Estimates of the Resident Population by Sex, Age, Race, and Hispanic Origin for the United States and States: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2018,” Table PEPASR6H. https://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?src=bkmk.

Table 12: School and Summer Feeding Programs, 2017-2018 School Year and Summer 2018

Number of Children Participating in: Summer Food Service Particiation as a Percent of Free and Reduced-Price Lunch Participation State Rank Based on Summer Food Service Participation as a Percent of Free and Reduced-Price Lunch Participationa
Free and Reduced-Price Lunch Free and Reduced-Price Breakfast Summer Food Service Programs
Alabama 381,580 227,749 36,351 9.5% 35
Alaskab 41,672 22,984 3,719 8.9 37
Arizona 488,816 269,293 56,979 11.7 29
Arkansas 240,289 157,877 24,246 10.1 33
California 2,582,731 1,451,915 413,455 16.0 12
Colorado 235,143 142,030 19,588 8.3 39
Connecticutb 178,530 91,829 33,977 19.0 7
Delawareb 66,831 41,979 10,415 15.6 15
District of Columbiab 47,708 32,317 15,274 32.0
Floridab 1,548,519 792,185 194,458 12.6 28
Georgiab 922,180 553,981 146,746 15.9 13
Hawaiib 65,867 26,170 5,353 8.1 42
Idahob 96,490 54,956 17,869 18.5 8
Illinoisb 825,852 410,643 87,412 10.6 31
Indiana 455,988 233,605 68,609 15.0 19
Iowa 184,169 80,426 18,625 10.1 32
Kansas 193,888 96,866 17,154 8.8 38
Kentuckyb 430,425 283,974 35,528 8.3 40
Louisianab 460,391 279,739 24,918 5.4 49
Maine 59,874 36,802 15,214 25.4 2
Maryland 315,147 195,775 65,425 20.8 6
Massachusetts 347,189 186,747 53,772 15.5 17
Michiganb 563,343 331,976 65,338 11.6 30
Minnesota 289,591 158,570 46,437 16.0 11
Mississippi 308,253 185,268 24,034 7.8 44
Missouri 371,665 226,474 29,343 7.9 43
Montanab 50,041 29,479 9,091 18.2 9
Nebraska 129,298 57,068 8,470 6.6 48
Nevadab 184,484 114,691 13,688 7.4 46
New Hampshire 35,389 15,513 4,826 13.6 24
New Jersey 453,791 267,998 95,512 21.0 5
New Mexicob 183,284 128,556 45,816 25.0 4
New Yorkb 1,384,373 717,607 348,387 25.2 3
North Carolinab 681,966 397,039 90,724 13.3 26
North Dakotab 34,236 17,351 2,823 8.2 41
Ohiob 658,813 373,380 61,926 9.4 36
Oklahoma 326,695 188,879 16,612 5.1 50
Oregonb 215,096 118,377 30,808 14.3 22
Pennsylvania 688,140 352,458 89,416 13.0 27
Rhode Island 52,702 27,672 9,235 17.5 10
South Carolinab 368,719 231,515 54,749 14.8 20
South Dakota 49,649 23,007 7,640 15.4 18
Tennesseeb 515,934 333,413 69,516 13.5 25
Texas 2,666,261 1,670,472 178,430 6.7 47
Utahb 166,263 65,572 25,886 15.6 16
Vermontb 27,224 18,922 7,826 28.7 1
Virginiab 457,822 280,210 64,294 14.0 23
Washington 354,622 166,162 34,867 9.8 34
West Virginiab 146,284 122,378 11,228 7.7 45
Wisconsinb 287,665 150,866 41,996 14.6 21
Wyomingb 25,542 11,773 4,012 15.7 14
United States 21,846,422 12,452,485 2,858,022 13.1%

a States are ranked 1-50 with 1 meaning the highest percent of children who receive free or reduced-price lunch also participated in Summer Nutrition Programs and 50 meaning the lowest number of children who receive free or reduced-price lunch also participate in Summer Nutrition Programs.

b In these states, 50 percent or more of eligible school districts adopted the Community Eligibility Provision for the 2017-2018 school year. These high poverty school districts offered breakfast and lunch at no charge to all students without having to collect and process individual meal applications.

Note: Participation data are based on average daily meals served from September through May for the School Lunch and Breakfast Programs and in July for the Summer Food Service Program.

Sources: Girouard, Diane, Crystal FitzSimons, and Randy Rosso. 2019. “School Breakfast Scorecard: School Year 2017-2018.” Food Research and Action Center (FRAC). https://www.frac.org/wp-content/uploads/school-breakfast-scorecard-sy-2017-2018.pdf; Hayes, Clarissa, Randy Rosso, and Crystal FitzSimons. 2019. “Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation: Summer Nutrition Status Report.” FRAC. https://frac.org/wp-content/uploads/frac-summer-nutrition-report-2019.pdf; Mauric, Alison et al. 2019. “Community Eligibility: The Key to Hunger-Free Schools: School Year 2018-2019.” FRAC. https://www.frac.org/wp-content/uploads/community-eligibility-key-to-hunger-free-schools-sy-2018-2019.pdf.