How would Trump's budget plan transform Ohio's food stamp (SNAP) program?


Released Monday, Trump's budget would cut more than $200 billion from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, known as SNAP - almost 30 percent over 10 years. "It maintains the same level of food value as SNAP [Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program] participants now receive, provides states flexibility in administering the program, and is responsible to the taxpayers". The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) now has strict restrictions on what can be purchased with these benefits.

The Trump administration wants to replace food stamps for low-income Americans with boxes of non-perishable food items selected by the government.

No fresh fruits or vegetables were listed among the items in the stable of foods that potentially would be sent to recipients, nor was there any indication of accommodations for health, cultural, religious or regional concerns.

"Often considered the backbone of their community, America's independent supermarket operators have always been indispensable partners in the SNAP food delivery system, serving millions of low-income households, including families with children, the elderly, and disabled", noted Greg Ferrara, EVP of advocacy, public relations, and member services at the Arlington-based National Grocers Association (NGA). Blue Apron delivers ready to cook gourmet meals to your door.

Some of Blue Apron's offerings include beef medallions and scallion salsa verde, salmon and dukkah-spiced vegetables and creamy fusilli bucati pasta with fried rosemary and walnuts, according to their website.

President Donald Trump wants to drastically scale back food stamps and replace them with a "food box" delivery program - like Blue Apron.

Consumer advocates are questioning whether the federal government could save almost $130 billion over 10 years by purchasing and distributing food on its own.

Meyer also says that he thinks this might be a way for "food businesses that have excess food that they're unable to get it off their warehouse shelves". "So we're pretty excited about that".

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the program would save $129 billion over 10 years.

Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass., called the idea "outrageous" and "a cruel joke".

The Trump administration called these "America's Harvest Boxes".

The plan was criticized due to questions about whether the boxes would contain healthy ingredients and how poor Americans without a auto would pick up the boxes.

"This sounds like something from the Great Depression, not 2018", Democratic Representative Jim McGovern tweeted.

She said the proposal, if enacted, "would be devastating for the one-in-eight Americans who use SNAP to put food on the table every day". There is also worry the proposals may arise in discussions about food assistance eligibility and benefits in Farm Bill talks.

The Trump administration pointed out one very important point: the USDA already distributes food commodities to schools, food banks and other organizations who then hand the food out to low-income families in need.

Blue Apron ships chilled meats, fish, and vegetables to people's doors so would-be chefs can follow instructions to assemble global meals.