Facts about U.S. and global hunger

  • The official U.S. poverty rate was 15 percent in 2010. The poverty line for a family of four is slightly more than $22,000 a year.
  • 1 in 4 Americans participated in a federal nutrition program in 2011.
  • From 1995-2010, the largest 10 percent of U.S. farms received 76 percent of federal farm support.
  • Approximately 925 million people suffer from chronic hunger globally.
  • Shipping food from the United States to countries in crisis costs about 25 percent more than purchasing locally.
  • In 2010, only 15 percent of the entire U.S. food aid budget was designated for local purchases.
  • The United States could have fed 17 million more people in 2010 if it purchased food aid supplies near countries in need, rather than in the U.S.

Sources: United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, Economic Research Service, Environmental Working Group, Oxfam America.

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