Start Date: September 2013

ID #: 71252

Principal Investigator: Sanjay Basu, MD, PhD

Organization: Stanford University

Funding Round: Round 8

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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.

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