Over 10 million children participate in the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Recent proposed policy changes have suggested banning or taxing the use of SNAP benefits for sugar-sweetened beverage purchases and/or subsidizing fruit and vegetable purchases with SNAP benefits. Several uncertainties about these proposed policies remain unanswered: 1) How will substitution of some products for others in response to price changes affect health outcomes? 2) How will SNAP participants supplement SNAP benefits with their own disposable income in response to the policy changes? 3) Will the costs of administering these interventions through SNAP justify their benefits? In this study, investigators will develop a microsimulation model of food consumption among SNAP participants and estimate the impact of proposed SNAP policy changes. The model will simulate a nationally representative set of households who enter and exit the SNAP participant pool over time, focusing on racially/ethnically diverse children and adolescents ages 3 to 18 and their families. Data from national nutrition surveys and the U.S. Department of Agriculture will be used to inform the simulation of proposed SNAP policy reforms.
Improving Healthy Eating Among Children Through Changes in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Policies: An Economic Microsimulation
This paper models the potential impact of two proposed policy changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP): a ban on using SNAP dollars to buy sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs); and a subsidy structured so that for every SNAP dollar spent on fruits and vegetables, thirty cents is credited back to … More
Evaluation of the USDA FINI Program Finds Benefits for Consumers, Farmers and Retailers, and Local Economies
In December 2018, Congress passed a new farm bill which included a reauthorization of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) Grant Program. This brief summarizes the findings of a recent qualitative evaluation of FINI, which concludes that the program has benefits for consumers, farmers and … More
Taxing sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) has emerged as an important healthy food and weight policy over the past five years. Seven US cities and more than 30 countries across the globe have adopted taxes on sugary drinks. Initial evaluations have found that these taxes raise the prices of sugary drinks and … More