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

by Garry Watts February 14, 2018, 17:40
SNAP program would be replaced with meal kits, according to Trump's proposal

White House Director of the Office of Management and Budget Mick Mulvaney compared the SNAP food package to Blue Apron.

"I don't think it would work", said Joe Brown, who has an EBT card and said he likes shopping for his own food. The people affected are households that receive at least $90 a month in assistance, or 81 percent of all Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients.

The Trump administration is proposing to replace almost half of poor Americans' monthly cash benefits with a box of food.

In Montana, the benefits are distributed through the electronic benefit transfer, or EBT, system.

Households that receive $90 or more in SNAP benefits would get a box of 100 percent USA -grown and produced food.

The proposal was included in the White House's 2019 fiscal budget.

Trump officials told reporters on Monday that the reforms would affect approximately 16 million Americans who now participate in SNAP, or 81 percent of households in the program.

In a news release, Jennifer Hatcher, Food Marketing Institute (FMI) chief public policy officer, called the SNAP proposals "major changes but not changes that SNAP-authorized food retailers see as positive or even efficient". "So we're pretty excited about that", Mulvaney said during the briefing Monday. The Trump Administration says this would also save the USDA $129 billion over the next decade.

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"The a classic example is that we don't want to pre box a share of food and give it to folks who have peanut allergies and assume they want peanut butter". Some believe replacing it with stamp, delivered boxes would not only change the way people eat.

The packages recipients would be given would not include fresh fruits or vegetables.

"It's taking away client choice and pushing the distribution cost onto state and local governments and the not-for-profit sector when they can not afford it", added Calvert.

But the so-called "America's Harvest Box" is already coming under criticism from those who say it won't live up to high-end standards and denies choices to people getting the benefit.

At dollar stores including Dollar General, Family Dollar, and Dollar Tree, food stamps account for roughly 5% of total sales, Bloomberg reports, citing Gordon Haskett Research Advisors analyst Chuck Grom.

Uncle Sam may be radically changing the federal government's SNAP program.

The budget describes the program as a "cost-effective approach" that will "generate significant savings to taxpayers with no loss in food benefits to participants".


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