Valerie Tarasuk wouldn’t be surprised if food charities receive record donations this holiday season. But she knows millions of Canadians will still go hungry.

“Even before the pandemic, when we look at the data, food charities would, at most, have seen one-sixth of the people who were struggling — and we have no evidence to suggest that the help people get from those (organizations) is sufficient to meet their needs,” said Tarasuk, a professor of nutritional sciences at the University of Toronto and the principal investigator for PROOF, an interdisciplinary research team investigating effective policy approaches to reduce food insecurity in Canada.