Food Stamp Statistics

Friday, Jul 10, 2009

33 million Americans participate in the food stamp program as of April 2009.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly the Food Stamp Program, Food Stamp Statistics (ODF) (http://www.fns.usda.gov/pd/SNAPsummary.htm and http://www.fns.usda.gov/pd/34SNAPmonthly.htm).

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (formerly the Food Stamp Program) traces its earliest origins back to the Food Stamp Plan, which began in 1939 to help needy families in the Depression era. The modern program began as a pilot project in 1961 and was authorized as a permanent program in 1964. Expansion of the program occurred most dramatically after 1974, when Congress required all States to offer food stamps to low-income households. The Food Stamp Act of 1977 made significant changes in program regulations, tightening eligibility requirements and administration, and removing the requirement that food stamps be purchased by participants.

United States Department of Agriculture, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Frequently Asked Questions, http://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/faqs.htm.