Pandemic Has Stressed The Importance Of SNAP, Vilsack Says

It should come as no surprifce, SNAP [Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program] has been under the spotlight a lot during the pandemic.

“I think it’s fair to say that the SNAP benefit is many cases not adequate enough to provide the help and assistance that is needed,” Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack noted during a recent anti-hunger conference. “We’re looking at the Thrifty Food Plan to see whether or not it need to be re-calibrated ion this modern age and modern day. I suspect that we’re gonna find that the foundation of that program doesn’t meet the activities of normal American families today. And it may result in some adjustment in terms of the benefit. We will see about that, but we’re certainly gonna take a close look at that.”

The Thrifty Food Program forms the basis for USDA’s nutrition programs. Meanwhile, because of the pandemic, USDA further increased SNAP benefits for an estimated 25 million very low income households. The increases start this month, although states may need some time to update their systems.   

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