As of the 2011 Indian census, Kendrapara district has a population of 1,439,891, roughly equal to the nation of Swaziland or the US state of Hawaii. This gives it a population ranking of 344th in India (out of a total of 640 districts). The district has a population density of 545 inhabitants per square kilometre (1,410 /sq mi) . Its population growth rate over the decade 2001-2011 was 10.59%. Kendrapara has a sex ratio of 1006 females for every 1000 males, and a literacy rate of 85.93%. The mother tongue of most of the residents of Kendrapara is Oriya (Odia). However, there is also a sizable population of Bangla and Urdu speakers. Hindi and English are also widely understood.
Most of the residents of Kendrapara are farmers. Some do business and some fish in the rivers and the Bay of Bengal. Some people also grow prawn near the sea shore, as it is profitable. Many small-scale industries are appearing in the area and bringing job opportunities.