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Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

snap house agriculture committee
The House Agriculture Committee held a hearing to explore the implications of restricting what can be purchased with Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. Members of the committee heard from a panel of witnesses who discussed the challenges of implementing product restrictions, the need for encouraging healthy purchasing habits, and the role that incentives and nutrition education can play in changing consumer behavior. Continue reading

Final Rule Balances Concerns Raised by Retailers While Still Improving Access to Healthy Food Choices for SNAP Participants

food
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack announced final changes to increase access to healthy food choices for participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). The provisions in this rule require SNAP authorized retail establishments to offer a larger inventory and variety of healthy food options.

“This final rule balances the need to improve the healthy staple foods available for purchase at participating stores, while maintaining food access for SNAP recipients in underserved rural and urban areas,” said Vilsack. “We received many helpful comments on the proposed rule and have modified the final rule in important ways to ensure that these dual goals are met. I am confident that this rule will ensure the retailers that participate in SNAP offer a variety of healthy foods for purchase and that SNAP recipients will continue to have access to the stores they need to be able to purchase food.” Continue reading

The Past, Present, and Future of SNAP

committee
The House Agriculture Committee held a hearing to evaluate the innovative strategies retailers are utilizing to improve access to nutritious food. Committee members heard from organizations that are working creatively to provide nutritious food to low-income individuals in low-access areas through online platforms and incentive programs.

“Communities across the country have different needs when it comes to food access. Some individuals have access to a grocer on every street corner, while others are miles away from the nearest store. However, consumers nationwide are able to purchase a variety of items online that can be delivered directly to their homes, and I am excited to hear how this technology can be used to provide SNAP recipients the same sort of access to nutritious food. This capability, along with other innovations like mobile markets and nutrition incentive programs, have great potential to increase access to healthy foods and to more effectively meet the needs of SNAP recipients,” said Chairman K. Michael Conaway. Continue reading

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