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About SNAP
Parent grocery shopping

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is the foundation of the nation’s nutrition safety net.

SNAP Facts

  • Each year, about 40 million low-income people receive assistance from SNAP

  • SNAP provides a monthly benefit for food on a debit-style Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) car

  • On average, the SNAP benefit is about $125 per person, per month -- or about $1.40 per meal

  • SNAP benefits can only be used to purchase food - SNAP cannot be used to purchase essential non-food items like soap, diapers, toilet paper, or period supplies

  • SNAP is a "means-tested program," which means that applicants must meet income thresholds and other eligibility requirements to qualify for assistance

    • Gross income cannot exceed 130% of the poverty level for most households - that's less than a​​bout $17,000 annually for one person and $23,000 for a household with two people

  • Unlike "block grant" programs, the structure of SNAP allows for everyone who is eligible to receive benefits

  • The countercyclical structure of the SNAP program allows it to respond to increasing need during recessions and periods of high unemployment and to contract when the economy improve

  • SNAP benefits are federally funded through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and are administered by states 

  • Some states have a different name for their SNAP program such as CalFresh, 3SquaresVT, and FoodShare


SNAP Works!

  • SNAP reduces food insecurity by 30%

  • SNAP reduces child poverty by 28%

    • In 2018, SNAP lifted 1.5 million children out of poverty

  • SNAP improves health and education outcomes

  • SNAP is one of the most effective forms of economic stimulus with each dollar in SNAP benefits generating about $1.54 in new economic activity

  • SNAP stimulates local economies and creates jobs

  • SNAP is efficient, with about 92% of federal spending going towards benefits to purchase food


SNAP Outreach Image in Spanish

SNAP Outreach Toolkit: COVID-19

SNAP outreach materials in English and Spanish that can be customized with the local details and specifics that best serve your community

Customizable Templates & Materials
Implementation Support
Outreach & Promotion Materials
Best for:
Nonprofit Sponsors
Program Sites
School Nutrition Staff

Block Grants and SNAP

Understand why block granting SNAP would weaken the most effective and powerful tool for ending childhood hunger.

Best for:
Federal Officials
State Officials