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Middlesex-London Health Unit

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Food Insecurity

When income is too low, people don't have enough money and are often forced to cut into their food budget for other expenses. They may skip meals or buy cheaper, less nutritious food which can have a serious impact on physical, mental and social health.


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Food Insecurity Matters

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Nutritious Food Basket - 2023 Survey Results

About 1 in 6 Middlesex-London households are food insecure.1 Everyone in our community should have access to a nutritious, adequate and culturally acceptable diet.

Food Insecurity Matters

Food insecurity can have a serious impact on physical, mental and social health which leads to higher health care use and costs. Poor nutrition can also lead to higher risk for chronic and infectious diseases, low birth weight and impact child development.2


Food Insecurity - 2023 Infographic

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Many Middlesex-London residents do not have enough money to afford basic needs, including housing and food.3

A single person receiving Ontario Works doesn’t receive enough money to pay for rent and food, not to mention paying for any other costs.

All Middlesex-London residents should have access to a nutritious, adequate and culturally acceptable diet. Income solutions are needed, like a living wage and social assistance rates that meet basic needs.

Get Involved

Spread the word

  • Talk about the issue with family and friends.
  • Share the message on social media.



  • It is important to advocate for income solutions to household food insecurity.
  • Advocate for living wage and increased social assistance.
  • Call, write, or meet with your local MP or MPP to express your concerns about household food insecurity in your community.

Be active in elections

  • Get involved during elections, your vote matters!

Learn more

Nutritious Food Basket

Each year, the Middlesex-London Health Unit surveys the price of 61 food items from 10 to 12 local grocery stores. This survey is called the Ontario Nutritious Food Basket (ONFB). The ONFB is used to see how affordable food is by comparing the cost of the food basket and housing to various individual and family income scenarios.

In 2023, households with low incomes spend up to 47% of their after-tax income on food, whereas, households who have adequate incomes (e.g., family of 4 median income) need to spend approximately 12% of their after-tax income.3

2023 Survey Results

Date of creation: January 18, 2013
Last modified on: January 8, 2024


1Ontario Agency for Health Protection and Promotion (Public Health Ontario). Household food insecurity estimates from the Canadian Income Survey: Ontario 2019-2022. Toronto, ON: King’s Printer for Ontario; 2023.
21 Tarasuk V, Li T, Fafard St-Germain AA. (2022). Household food insecurity in Canada, 2021. Toronto: Research to identify policy options to reduce food insecurity (PROOF). Retrieved from Retrieved from
3Middlesex-London Health Unit. (2023). Monitoring Food Affordability and Implications for Public Policy and Action (2023) Retrieved from