The cost of feeding a family in the capital rose more than 20 per cent during the pandemic, according to a new study by Ottawa Public Health.
It costs at least $1,088 per month to feed healthy meals to a family of four in the city, up from $901 in 2019, says Ottawa Public Health’s 2022 Nutritious Food Basket survey.
For those living on Ontario Works financial assistance, or for single people living on the Ontario Disability Support Program income, paying for items like fruits and vegetables means going into debt, the report found.
Researchers looked at 61 nutritious foods from various categories and tracked their prices at 14 stores in Ottawa — 12 in urban areas and two in rural parts of the city — between May 17 and June 6, 2022.
Food was selected using the updated Canada Food Guide and covered four categories: vegetables and fruit, protein foods, whole grains, and fats and oils. The study did not include infant foods, processed foods or allergen-free foods.
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