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Inflation is surging in the United States - in large part because of rising food prices. In cities across the country, food today is 8% more expensive on average than it was a year ago, and American families are feeling the pinch.

According to the Economic Policy Institute, a nonprofit think tank, a family of four - two adults and two children - can expect to pay an estimated $9,835 on food in 2022. This amount varies across the country, however.

In Pennsylvania, a family of four can expect to spend an average of $9,903 on food in 2022, the 21st highest amount among states, according to the EPI's Family Budget Calculator. This amount assumes a nutritionally adequate diet for two adults and two children where almost all food is bought at a grocery store and prepared at home.

Food costs are partially driven by what residents can afford, and states with higher food costs also often have higher than average family incomes, and vice-versa. Pennsylvania is no exception. Just as food costs are higher than average in Pennsylvania, so, too, are incomes. The typical family in the state earns $80,996 a year, compared to the national average of $80,069.

Pennsylvania residents are more likely to rely on government assistance to afford groceries than the typical American. An estimated 13.9% of the state population rely on SNAP benefits, formerly known as food stamps, compared to the 12.1% national SNAP recipiency rate.

Food cost figures in this story are 2022 estimates from the EPI and family income and SNAP recipiency figures are five-year estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau's 2020 American Community Survey. 

RankStateEst. avg. annual food costs, family of 4 ($)Median family income ($)SNAP recipiency rate (%)
1Hawaii$14,042$97,81311.80%
2Massachusetts$11,674$106,52612.50%
3Maine$11,480$76,19213.50%
4Vermont$11,430$83,02311.50%
5New York$11,180$87,27015.20%
6Connecticut$10,910$102,06112.40%
7Rhode Island$10,834$89,33015.90%
8New Hampshire$10,832$97,0017.40%
9New Jersey$10,750$104,8049.10%
10California$10,543$89,79810.20%
11Washington$10,525$92,42212.00%
12Florida$10,385$69,67013.90%
13Colorado$10,384$92,7528.00%
14Maryland$10,293$105,79010.80%
15Oregon$10,175$80,63016.00%
16Delaware$10,169$84,82511.50%
17Virginia$10,064$93,2848.50%
18Nevada$9,990$74,07712.70%
19Minnesota$9,936$92,6928.40%
20Wyoming$9,917$81,2905.90%
21Pennsylvania$9,903$80,99613.90%
22North Dakota$9,824$86,7987.30%
23Idaho$9,786$70,88510.00%
24Montana$9,782$72,77310.10%
25Louisiana$9,748$65,42715.80%
26Alabama$9,631$66,77213.70%
27Tennessee$9,595$68,79313.10%
28South Dakota$9,546$77,0429.50%
29Georgia$9,507$74,12712.80%
30Alaska$9,419$92,64812.90%
31Mississippi$9,350$58,92315.20%
32Kansas$9,341$77,6207.80%
33Arizona$9,338$73,45611.20%
34New Mexico$9,297$62,61117.70%
35Illinois$9,274$86,25113.10%
36North Carolina$9,267$70,97812.50%
37Utah$9,239$84,5906.90%
38Oklahoma$9,223$67,51113.40%
39Missouri$9,104$72,83411.10%
40South Carolina$9,086$68,81311.70%
41Nebraska$9,081$80,1258.70%
42Wisconsin$9,058$80,84410.90%
42Michigan$9,058$75,47013.50%
44Ohio$8,904$74,39113.30%
45Iowa$8,885$79,18610.60%
46Arkansas$8,838$62,06712.20%
47Texas$8,660$76,07312.10%
48West Virginia$8,634$61,70717.10%
49Indiana$8,544$73,2659.80%
50Kentucky$8,527$65,89313.60%

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Originally published on 247wallst.com, part of the TownNews Content Exchange.

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