SNAP harvest box replaces food stamps

Food Stamps, SNAP and Harvest Boxes-All You Need To Know

What is SNAP

According to the United States Department of Agriculture the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP is a federal government nutritional program offering food assistance to low income families. Certain income thresholds are used to identify recipient eligibility.

Food Stamps replaced by SNAP

Announced Monday by the Trump Administration, low-income Americans who receive at least $90 a month — just over 80 percent of all SNAP recipients — would get about half of their benefits in the form of a “USDA Foods package.” Think of the package as something similar to a blue aprin box where the recipient receives a preassembled meal box with all the ingredients. The package was described in the budget as consisting of “shelf-stable milk, ready to eat cereals, pasta, peanut butter, beans and canned fruit and vegetables.” The boxes would not include fresh fruits or vegetables.

Difficulties with Harvest Box

There are lots of unanswered questions on how the new food stamp program will work: Would boxes be delivered door-to-door? Should people be at home to receive the Harvest boxes — a likely challenge for people who work 2nd shift? Or would people have to visit a logistics center? What happens to disabled individuals? or the elderly? What about transportation costs, or accessibility, particularly in rural areas?

Harvest boxes would also be less reliable, because logisticss can easily be interrupted while transferring benefits to a debit card rarely is. This is particularly relevant during events such as natural disasters, which Vollinger says SNAP has tackled effectively because of its ability to electronically distribute emergency benefits through EBT.