Facts about Hunger in South Carolina

January 18, 2012

With talk on the campaign trail in South Carolina touching on aspects of hunger and food assistance programs, please take a look at some of the facts regarding hunger in South Carolina:

South Carolina facts on hunger


  • Total food insecurity rate (availability of food and one's access to it): 18 percent
    • Total number of food insecure people: 807,960
  • Total child food insecurity rate: 28 percent
    • Total number of children who are food insecure: 292,840
  • South Carolina County with largest number of food insecure people: Allendale County.
    • 36% total food insecure
    • 40% child food insecure
  • South Carolina's largest cities and food insecurity rates by its respective County (overall, child)
      1. Columbia, Richland County: (17%, 20%)
      2. Charleston, Charleston County (16%, 24%)
      3. N. Charleston, Charleston County (16%, 24%)
      4. Mt. Pleasant, Charleston County (16%, 24%)
      5. Rock Hill, York County (18%, 30%)

Food Insecurity in the United States

  • Nearly 49 million people in the US are food insecure, about 1 in 6 Americans
  • 16 million children are food insecure, more than 1 in 5 children

SNAP ( Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly Food Stamps)

  • SNAP provides over 46 million low-income participants, more than 840,000 in SC, with monthly benefits via a grocery debit card.
  • In FY 2012, the average SNAP household had a gross monthly income of $731 nationally, but only $652 in South Carolina.
  • In FY 2010, children and seniors accounted for more than half (52%) of SNAP participants in South Carolina.
  • The accuracy rate of 96.19% (FY2010) is now at an all-time program high and program error rates have declined 61% since FY 1999.

"Millions of Americans are unemployed and millions of others are working for reduced wages or working fewer hours. Many of these people never thought they would need a helping hand, but are now turning to programs like SNAP," said Vicki Escarra, president and CEO of Feeding America."We know that the number of people coming to Feeding America food banks for assistance increased a staggering 46 percent in the last few years. Food stamps and other anti-hunger programs give hope to struggling Americans and protect them from deeper crisis as they work to get back on their feet."


Please contact one of our media representatives or call 800-771-2303

About Feeding America

Feeding America® is the largest hunger-relief organization in the United States. Through a network of more than 200 food banks, 21 statewide food bank associations, and over 60,000 partner agencies, food pantries and meal programs, we helped provide 5.2 billion meals to tens of millions of people in need last year. Feeding America also supports programs that prevent food waste and improve food security among the people we serve; brings attention to the social and systemic barriers that contribute to food insecurity in our nation; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Visit www.feedingamerica.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.