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USDA Says Food Assistance Program Is Reaching The Neediest Americans

July 9, 2010: 01:24 PM EST
Sixty-seven percent of all families eligible in fiscal year 2008 for the U.S. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as the food stamps program, participated, up from 66 percent the year before, according to the USDA. Eighty-six percent of children eligible for SNAP benefits participated in 2008. The largest of the USDA’s 15 nutrition aid programs, SNAP helps poor people buy fruits, vegetables and whole grains. It currently serves 40 million low-income people. The program is also linked with other benefits. Schools can use SNAP certification information to enroll children to receive free school meals without any added paperwork. USDA said the amount of benefits delivered in proportion to total benefits if every eligible household participated – called the benefit receipt rate – also increased in 2008.
USDA Food and Nutrition Service, "Trends in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Participation Rates: 2001 to 2008", USDA report, July 09, 2010, © USDA
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