More than Just Not Enough: Experiences of Food Insecurity for Latino Immigrants

J Immigr Minor Health. 2015 Oct;17(5):1548-56. doi: 10.1007/s10903-014-0124-6.


Undocumented Latino immigrants often struggle to provide food for their families. In an attempt to inform efforts to create effective programs and policies promoting food security, this study explored the experience of food insecurity for low-income, undocumented Latino immigrants. In-depth qualitative interviews were conducted with 24 undocumented Latino immigrants. Modified grounded theory was used to analyze the interview data. The experience of food insecurity was similar to other groups' experiences, as it entailed inadequate amount and quality of food. However, immigration and documentation status presented unique vulnerabilities for food insecurity related to unfamiliar food environments, remittances and separation, employment, and community and government resources. Cultural and structural factors that may shape the experience of and response to food insecurity are discussed along with implications for policy and programming.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Culture
  • Emigrants and Immigrants / psychology*
  • Female
  • Food Supply*
  • Hispanic Americans / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Poverty / ethnology
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Undocumented Immigrants / psychology*