Home 5 Ag Stories Addressing food insecurity in Iowa

Addressing food insecurity in Iowa

by Ben Nuelle LISTEN: world-of-agriculture-10-13-16

Around ten to 11 percent of Iowans worry about putting food on the dinner table.

Liesl Eathington is an assistant scientist in the department of economics at Iowa State University. She says around ten percent of Iowans suffer from food insecurity.

“That’s a household where there is concern over the year about the ability to provide enough food for all of its members. In some cases, people have to reduce their food intake at times during the year because they can’t get enough to eat for all of their family.”

Eathington says we can look at food insecurity areas in two different ways.

“We’ve got a lot of counties in Iowa where there are comparatively high rates of food insecurity. Numerically some of our larger counties like Polk, in the Council Bluffs, Waterloo and Cedar Rapids areas we may have more people suffering from it. It really raises a dilemma. Do we target areas with high rates or areas with high numbers?”

Eathington says the first thing we need to do is raise awareness about food insecurity. She says the problem is greater than we can measure and we need to also figure out how to use limited resources.