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Hunger in the North

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In Canada's territories, 1 in every 5 households skips meals because there isn't enough food in the house, or eat suboptimal food because they can’t afford better. This has drastic consequences for the health of northerners.

Hunger and food insecurity are experienced at elevated levels across the north, including northern provincial regions. This is particularly true among First Nations, Métis and Inuit populations, who are experiencing a destabilizing transition from a subsistence to a market/mixed economy. Decreased access to traditional foods and increased reliance on store-bought foods are central aspects of this transition.

In the North, the cost of store-bought food can be astronomical. The high cost of food, a lack of job opportunities, high levels of poverty, and decreasing consumption of traditional foods have combined to create a serious and pressing public health emergency which we profiled in our HungerCount 2016 report.

Food insecurity in the Canadian North is nothing short of a public health emergency. Food Banks Canada has created two policy papers that address this issue, and which put forward policy recommendations to increase food security for northerners. 

Is Nutrition North Canada on Shifting Ground?

What Will it Take to Make Real Progress on Northern Food Security?

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of food distributed by Canadian food banks is fresh (eg. milk, eggs, fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables, bread)