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Food Insecurity, What's That?

Food security is defined as “ready availability of nutritionally adequate and safe foods.” The measure was introduced by the U.S. Census Bureau in 1996 to assess households’ ability to consistently obtain three nutritionally adequate meals a day. Households can be rated as being food secure, low food secure, or very low food secure.

Nationally, 14.6 percent of households were food insecure on average between 2011-13, including 5.7 percent that had very low food security, or hunger. In Oklahoma, 15.5 percent of households experienced food insecurity, including 6.7 percent which experienced very low food security.

Food insecurity and very low food security are more prevalent in households with children, especially young children; single-parent households, Black and Hispanic households, and low-income households.

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