What Are Food Stamps?

food stamps

This might come as a surprise, but 1 in 6 people—almost 50 million Americans—currently depend on food stamps. The Food Stamp Program (also known as the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program or SNAP) provides food assistance to people across the country.  It aims to help low-income families supplement the cost of their diet with nutritious foods.

The Food Stamp Program was first introduced during the Great Depression. Today, people still struggle with food insufficiency. It continues as a safety net for low income families. 

Places that accept food stamps or Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards (which are given to those eligible for SNAP benefits):
  • Supermarkets
  • Grocery stores
  • Farmer’s markets
  • Soup kitchens
  • Shelters that serve meals

Many people don’t know they are eligible for food stamps. It is estimated that 1 in 4 Americans who are eligible don’t receive SNAP benefits; the only way to find out is to apply. You can own a house, a car, be in immigrant, have money saved, and still be able to acquire food assistance. Eligibility is based on income.

Run a food collection drive. GO



Neighborhood Legal Services Association



Department of Agriculture

New York Times