Saturday, November 29, 2008

Report: 36 million Americans food insecure

More than 36 million Americans, including 12.4 million children, are food insecure, officials of a U.S. non-profit group said.

Feeding America, a U.S. hunger-relief organization, said the actual number of Americans forced to skip meals and survive without adequate nutrition is even greater than the report indicates because it is based on statistics from 2007.

"It is important to note that the U.S. Department of Agriculture numbers released today are 2007 figures and do not take into account the unprecedented economic crisis that our country is currently facing," Vicki Escarra, president of Feeding America said in a statement.

"Feeding America believe that this is just the beginning of a downward trend and we expect things to get worse before they get better," Escarra said.

The organization serves more than 200 food banks that provide food to the vast majority of food pantries, soup kitchens and emergency feeding centers nationwide. More than 4 million people stand in line every week for a few bags of groceries to help feed themselves and their families, Escarra said.

"Our food banks are calling us every day, telling us that demand for emergency food is higher than it has ever been in our history," Escarra said.

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