In what is claimed to be one of the richest countries in history, the USA had Americans suffering from food insecurity at some point last year. A 9% rise in hunger in 2020 compared with the 2019 level of 35.2 million.
The federal government's first comprehensive attempt to document how the Covid-19 pandemic found that the number of children in the U.S. suffering from hunger increased from 10.7 million in 2019 to 11.7 million last year, also an increase of 9%.
60 million people—close to one in five U.S. residents—received charitable food assistance last year, up 50% from 2019, according to Emily Engelhard, managing director of research at Feeding America, the nation's largest domestic hunger-relief organization.
CNN reported that the group's network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries distributed over six billion meals in 2020, an increase of 44% from the year before.
Another USDA report (pdf) released last month showed that federal spending on domestic food and nutrition assistance programs in 2020 reached a historic high of $122.1 billion, which was 32% greater than the previous year.