Food Insecurity in Eastern Ontario – A Matter of Concern

December 11, 2019 – The cost of nutritious food in the United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry, and Prescott-Russell and the City of Cornwall has increased by 9% in 2019 compared to 2018. A survey on the local cost of healthy groceries by the Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) determined that it now costs $919 per month to feed a family of four.

“These costs keep increasing every year, and because of the cost of housing and inadequate income, many people and families are struggling every month to meet the needs of their household,” says Nikolas Hotte, Manager of the Chronic Disease Prevention program at the EOHU.

Food insecurity is defined as not having enough money to buy food

Data shows that in Eastern Ontario, one in seven households fit this description. “Food insecurity is a serious public health problem that impacts physical, mental and social health,” says Dr. Paul Roumeliotis, Medical Officer of Health at the EOHU. To learn more about food insecurity, visit the “No Money for Food is… Cent$less” website.

Every year, the EOHU along with all health units in Ontario, completes the costing of 67 food items to estimate the basic cost of healthy eating for individuals and households. The data collected in the Nutritious Food Basket survey is used to monitor both the affordability and accessibility of foods by comparing the cost of a nutritious food basket to individual and household incomes.

Source: Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU)