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Food insecurity is a growing problem in the Finger Lakes: See the data by county

  • / Updated:
  • Staff Report 

A new report from Feeding America revealed a dramatic increase in food insecurity in the Finger Lakes region, marking the sharpest rise since the Great Recession. Data from Foodlink’s 10-county network showed food insecurity rates spiking from 9.3% in 2021 to 12% in 2022, affecting an additional 33,580 people.


Each of Foodlink’s counties experienced significant increases, with Allegany County having the highest rate at 14.3%. The City of Rochester’s 14605 zip code now has the third-highest food insecurity rate in New York state at 29.8%. The surge in food insecurity is attributed to rising food inflation and the expiration of COVID-era federal assistance programs.

Foodlink’s President & CEO, Julia Tedesco, noted the increased demand, with pantry visits up 35% in early 2024 compared to the same period in 2023. Local organizations, supported by Foodlink, have been crucial in meeting this rising need, providing essential food supplies to struggling families and seniors.