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Monday, October 25, 2010

Another Ban in New York City?

According to the Food Stamp Act of 1977, the purpose of those food stamps is to "alleviate hunger and malnutrition, by increasing food purchasing power for all eligible households who apply for participation". The Food Stamp Act is actually part of the Farm Bill, and helps many, many, many parents provide fruits, veggies, meats and milk to keep their children healthy and strong as they grow. Preventing kids from hunger helps them learn better, be more active and achieve more through out their lifetime.

New York City has about 1.7 million people on food stamps.

About $75 million per year (just in New York City) goes to subsidize and pay for sugary drinks, like soda pop and energy drinks (not fruits, veggies, meat or milk).

New York City is working to ban the use of food stamps on sugary drinks.

What are your thoughts?
  • Should those who use the SNAP program (food stamps) be allowed to spend the money as they wish (with the current exceptions of no tobacco or alcohol)?

  • Should nutritionally devoid foods, like pop and energy drinks, be purchased with money earmarked for "alleviating hunger and malnutrition"?

  • Should pop and energy drinks be considered "food"?

3 comments:

Jason said...

I think this is a brilliant idea. It should be done nationally, not just in NY. People shouldn't be able to buy free sodas and candy with funds given to them by us the tax payers. On top of that, I would be willing to bet that a large percentage of those who receive food stamps will also be on medicaid. Which means that we will be paying for their healthcare at some point too. If they are eating healthier, then that could help reduce healthcare costs.

Anonymous said...

Yes! It definitely should be done. I used to frequent a small grocery store in a poorer part of town, and literally 85% of the time, the person in front of me was using some sort of food assistance program. One of the programs gave the people vouchers for food, but it was very specific foods. They only had one option. Whole wheat bread, not white. Fruit, not gummy fruit snacks. Milk, not soda. And so on. I think that program is the way it should be done, instead of giving them a "credit" card preloaded and ready to spend on whatever they want like Wisconsin's Quest card.
-tk

LIFE in POTS said...

Making the stamps worth more when spent on whole foods sounds like an even better plan, if using food stamps could be coupled with mandatory educational classes on healthy eating. But, I guess spending money on teaching good habits is never a go here in the USA, we seem to prefer banning things :) Plus, then the FDA may have to own up that GMO foods and processed foods aren't the best option and their share holders (not they are suppose to have them) would never go for that.