The latest national survey on food insecurity by the U.S. Department of Agriculture finds Louisiana faring relatively well, even besting the national average.

Louisiana tied with Connecticut for 14th place on the list and ranked highest among states in the South. According to the survey, 11 percent of Louisianans experienced food insecurity during the survey period, 2006-2008. Coincidentally or not, the three states with the highest rates of food insecurity are Louisiana’s contiguous neighbors — Mississippi (17.4 percent), Texas (16.3) and Arkansas (15.9).

According to the DOA, food insecurity occurs when “the food intake of one or more household members was reduced and their eating patterns were disrupted at times during the year because the household lacked money and other resources for food.” The national average for food insecurity in the survey is 12.2 percent. The rate of food insecurity in the United States in this latest survey was the highest since food security rates were tracked beginning in 1995.

To see the full survey, log on to the Department of Agriculture’s Web site.

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