Essay On The Federal Food Stamp Program

1008 WordsOct 2, 20175 Pages
TO: Mayor Bill de Blasio FROM: Bonnie Humpherys, SUBJECT: SNAP Program Reform DATE: October 6, 2017 The federal food stamp program (SNAP), makes up the largest portion of the budget for the US Department of Agriculture.1 In New York alone 15.3% of residents receive benefits from the SNAP program.2 The purpose of SNAP is to provide nutrition to low-income citizens, however SNAP beneficiaries experience higher rates of obesity compared non-reciepiants.3 According to a report published by the USDA, Americans use food stamps to buy more than $600 million worth of “sweetened beverages,” and bought hundreds of millions more of junk food and sugary snacks.4 Lack of regulation and reform to the SNAP program is causing harm to the public.…show more content…
A report released from NYC HRA revealed that over 40% of SNAP cases have balances of less than $20 by the end of the second week each month.11 Scholars who have researched obesity and the paradox of hunger confirmed a symptom of obesity is overeating when food is available. The total annual medical costs of obesity in the United States in now an estimated $190 million.12A recent report estimated that by 2030 U.S. healthcare spending will rise to 68 billion annually if obesity rates continue to increase.13 Obesity rates in the US are rising due to food insecurity. One in six people in the U.S. are food insecure, while two-thirds of adults and one-third Americans are overweight or obese.14 Studies have found that wealthy districts have three times as many supermarkets compared to the poor.15 Kevin Conocannon of the USDA noted in an interview that people in poorer areas sometimes have narrower variety of food options.16 SNAP recipients face barriers to achieving nutritious diets due to lack of availability in their neighborhood. Healthy food often comes with higher costs, so most people with lower income result to eating foods with lower cost and higher calories. According to a 2009 report by the USDA, as many as 23.5 million Americans live more than one mile from a supermarket with limited access to a vehicle.17 Food Deserts are particularly prevalent in low-income communities.18
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