States Move Ahead With Food Stamp Cuts

food stamps

Benson questions the GOP ‘s morality: “House Republicans are badly in need of a moral compass. Their hypocrisy is only surpassed by their cruelty. “The GOP says that the 4 million Americans who will be kicked off SNAP are capable of helping themselves. I hope that our very capable farmers aren’t being subsidized while this assistance to the poor is deemed too expensive.” Long Beach resident Matthew Black points out more pressing spending concerns: “The GOP has truly hit a new low. After increasing annual defense spending by more than $300 billion since 2001, spending $2 trillion on unnecessary wars and passing $1.7 trillion in tax cuts between 2001 and 2003 that primarily went to the wealthiest Americans, Republicans need to save $40 billion on food stamps. “Way to go. Why do I feel I’m reading a Charles Dickens novel? “And for those who might reply that Democrats should put their money where their mouths are, this week I donated another $250 to a local food bank. I contribute 5% of my disposable income to food banks.” Frances Terrell Lippman of Sherman Oaks picks up on the Dickens reference: “I guess those Scrooge-like, coldhearted House Republicans thought of an early holiday surprise. How generous of them to think it would be appropriate just to remind people who are hungry and struggling that it would get a little more impossible for them to feed their families. Their apathy is only exceeded by their cruelty. “Being hungry and homeless in America is this country’s greatest shame, and yet our so-called leaders in Washington couldn’t care less and only serve to exacerbate this terrible and fixable situation.

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Enrollment hit record highs, with 15 percent of Americans now collecting benefits. Many states have more than 20 percent of their population enrolled. Costs have continued to spike as well, as Washington pays for the benefits and states administer them. A new Congressional Research Service report released this month showed fiscal year 2012 was the 12th year in a row a new historical high was reached for federal food and nutrition programs, the vast majority of which is food stamps. Since fiscal year 2000, the report said, spending on federal food assistance has more than tripled. Put in a different context, the U.S. Census Bureau said food stamps lifted 4 million Americans out of poverty last year if the benefits were counted as income. What states are doing Kansas is the latest to embrace the cuts, ending a federal waiver on Oct. 1 that allows unemployed, non-elderly and able-bodied adults without children to remain on food stamps despite failing to meet certain work requirements. The change is expected to affect 20,000 Kansans. Wisconsin will let its waiver expire in July 2014, and Oklahoma will also let its waiver at the end of this month; 71,000 and 47,000 people, respectively, received benefits through the waiver in 2011, the latest year for which data is available.

Expired Food Store Set to Open Next Year

of Americans throw out food prematurely, as TIME reported last week. Basically, consumers are confused by phrasing like use by and sell by and so, to be safe, they end up tossing perfectly good produce, snacks and more. In reality, food dating really just indicates when an item is at its peak freshness, not when it becomes inedible. All of this got Doug Rauch, the former president of the Trader Joes supermarket chain, thinking about a potential solution. And now, it seems he might have found one: a market that specializes in preparing and repackaging expired food and selling it at deeply discounted prices. He plans to launch this project, called the Daily Table, next year in Bostons working-class Dorchester neighborhood, NPR reports . (MORE: How Two German-Owned Sister Supermarket Brands Became Hot Trendsetters ) Its the idea about how to bring affordable nutrition to the underserved in our cities, Rauch told NPR. It basically tries to utilize this 40 percent of this food that is wasted.He explained that the Daily Tables setup will be kind ofa hybrid between a grocery store and a restaurant if you would, because primarily its going to take this food in, prep it, cook it [for] what I call speed-scratch cooking. The basic concept of repurposing expired food isnt new. Food banks, for example, have been doing it for years. But the idea here is to make this nutritional food an affordable, quick and easy option to people who might otherwise spend their lunch money at McDonalds. And of course, its about implementing a longer-term solution to the growing problem of wasted food across the U.S. This is about trying to tackle a very large social challenge we have, Rauch told NPR, that is going to create a health care tsunami in cost if we dont do something about it.