Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Will Food Stamps Get A Ban On Junk Food?

Republicans are looking to ban Food Stamp users from being able to buy soda and candy. According to a study conducted on a US grocery retailer released by USDA in 2011, 20 cents of every dollar in food stamps was spent on candy, sugar, sweetened beverages, salty snacks, and desserts. 

 Now, governors in Maine, Tennessee, and Arkansas are looking to get the Trump Administration on board with the potential restriction of food stamp purchases. The Secretary of Agriculture under the Trump Administration has already given support for restructuring SNAP benefits for 44 million recipients.

Not everyone is in support of the potential regulation, as an executive director of the Cumberland County Food Security Council in Maine has spoken out against his governor's idea. 

The director said, "It seems very contradictory to, on one hand, limit people's access to foods that have negative nutrition content and then to limit access to information to support them to make better choices about nutrition."


Texas bill would ban food stamp recipients from buying junk food, soda

House Bill 4364, filed by Texas state Rep. Briscoe Cain in March, would make food items such as candy and energy drinks ineligible to buy with food stamps.

The bill defines an energy drink as a beverage containing at least 65 milligrams of caffeine per eight fluid ounces and is advertised as "being specifically designed to provide metabolic stimulation or an increase to the consumer's mental or physical energy." Coffee or coffee-based beverages are not grouped in with this definition, according to the bill.

Sweetened beverages — meaning non-alcoholic drinks added with natural or artificial sweeteners such as soft drinks, fruits and vegetable juice and other flavored beverages — would also be included in the ban.


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