Today, the Community FoodBank of New Jersey (CFBNJ) released a special report about the impact of COVID-19 on hunger in New Jersey. The report, titled “COVID-19’s Impact on Food Insecurity in New Jersey,” uses statistical projections from Feeding America to examine anticipated increases to food insecurity across the state in 2020 and to advance recommendations for the public and nonprofit sectors to address this urgent need.

Among its findings is one particularly troubling discovery, that New Jersey is expected to experience greater hardship than neighboring states and the nation as a whole. The number of New Jerseyans struggling with hunger is projected to rise by 56% as a direct result of COVID-19, 10 percentage points higher than the national average and the anticipated increases in New York, Pennsylvania, and Delaware. This increase in food insecurity is largely driven by disproportionate unemployment in certain industries, such as leisure and hospitality, which has hit especially hard in certain parts of the state.

“In less than a year, COVID-19 is erasing nearly a decade of advancement towards food security in New Jersey and nationwide,” said Carlos Rodriguez, President & CEO of the Community FoodBank of New Jersey. “It’s clear from the data presented in this report that no part of our state will be spared from the pandemic’s effects on hunger. The public, private, and nonprofit sectors must work together in response to the long-term elevated need that we’re going to see throughout New Jersey.”

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The report also maps the increases in food insecurity across the state’s 21 counties to show which areas will be the most heavily impacted.

To read the full report, visit cfbnj.org/COVIDImpact.