Canada's food insecurity problem is about to get worse due to COVID-19, experts say

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(CTV News)

Access to affordable and nutritious food is an ongoing struggle for many Canadian families and experts warn that the situation is likely to get worse by the fall because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a survey done in May by Statistics Canada, almost one in seven (14.6 percent) Canadians indicated that they lived in a household where food insecurity was a problem. This number is up from 10.5 percent just two years ago.

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought distinct challenges to many sectors of the food supply chain that have reshaped their operations with physical distancing, the use of personal protective gear and equipment modifications—all of which are contributing to rising costs.

Talking Points:

Two years ago, a Stats Canada survey found that 10.5% of Canadians self-identified as living in a household where food insecurity was an issue. Two months ago in May, this figure grew to 14.6%. Today, preventative measures related to food processing—key to curtailing the spread of COVID-19—are also contributing to a rise in the cost of food. This is something that is likely to significantly impact already financially vulnerable households, especially when measures like CERB eventually come to an end. COVID-19 has uncovered the cracks in our food supply chain and spotlighted the need to re-think existing practices in this space. - Alexandra Cutean | email

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