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SNAP program would be replaced with meal kits, according to Trump's proposal

14 February, 2018, 18:22 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
  • SNAP program would be replaced with meal kits according to Trump proposal

- The Trump administration could begin delivering food to many low income families à la Blue Apron, as part of a proposal that would drastically change the federal food stamp program.

The Trump administration has proposed replacing the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) with a USDA Foods Package containing nonperishable items, including "shelf-stable milk, ready to eat cereals, pasta, peanut butter, beans and canned fruit and vegetables" but no fresh meat, fish or produce.

Director of the Office of Management and Budget Mick Mulvaney said the cuts would save the government close to 130 billion dollars over the next 10 years and would still provide healthy nutritious foods to millions of Americans.

"America's Harvest Box is a bold, innovative approach to providing nutritious food to people who need assistance feeding themselves and their families - and all of it is home grown by American farmers and producers". According to Politico, the box would contain "100 percent USA grown and produced food" and would feature foods like "shelf-stable milk, peanut butter, canned fruits and meats, and cereal". "As we understand the proposal in the president's budget to create a USDA commodity foods box of staples, each of these achievements would be lost".

The White House estimates that taxpayers would save $129 billion as a result of the changes to the food stamp program beginning in 2019.

"I just got off food stamps", Anthony Burke said.

Banks said she's angered by the Trump administration's proposed $213 billion cut to SNAP.

The proposed transformation of the nation's food stamp program brings up logistical questions about distribution and transportation; recordkeeping and security.

That savings requires a almost 30 percent budget cut to the SNAP program. It says: "States will be given substantial flexibility to distribute these food benefits to participants".

The President said that any household qualifying for more than $90 in food stamps, would receive the new boxes. About 20 markets around the state accept SNAP benefits. Under the proposal, most SNAP recipients would lose much of their ability to choose the food they buy with their SNAP benefits.

Except SNAP is one of the most efficient government programs, with some of the lowest numbers for misuse. The USDA's budget proposal says that the agency plans for 1.4 million fewer people to receive benefits in 2019.

Advocates for the hungry said they are skeptical of the plan and unclear how it would work for people with specialized diets, or whether USDA would allot the same foods to, say, an elderly diabetic and a family with young children.



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