What People Buy With Food Stamps

Here’s What People Buy With Food Stamps

Food stamp recipients buy a lot of soda, just like everyone else.

Supermarket, Cola, Soft Drink, Soda

11/21/2016 01:40 pm ET
Arthur Delaney Senior Reporter, The Huffington Post and 
Alissa Scheller Visuals Editor, The Huffington Post

WASHINGTON ― Though people like to complain about food stamp recipients using their benefits for unhealthy things like soda and extravagances like crab legs, new data show they buy basically the same food as everyone else.

Households participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and households that didn’t get benefits both bought a lot of junk food, according to a new study commissioned by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which oversees the program.

About 40 cents of every dollar went to basics like bread, milk, meat, eggs, fruits and vegetables for both types of households. And 20 cents of every dollar went to sodas and salty snacks. As a percentage of their spending, soft drinks were the top individual commodity among food stamp households, and they came in second place among non-SNAP households.  Read more here.