May 28, 2021

The SNAP Gap: A State-by-State Glance

Emerson Hunger Fellow

A recent FRAC Chat reported that the federal fiscal year 2018 SNAP eligibility-to-participation gap, or the “SNAP gap,” was around 18 percent. That means that nearly one in five individuals eligible for SNAP missed out on benefits. Now we have state-by-state data on SNAP participation rates overall and for low-income households, including those that are employed.

May 26, 2021

Older Americans Month: A time to tackle food insecurity

Director of Special Projects and Initiatives

Communities of Strength is this year’s theme for Older Americans Month. There are many ways to build community strength. Tackling the growing food insecurity among older adults is foundational to achieving active aging and wellness.

May 21, 2021

USDA-FNS Releases SNAP Participation Rates for Fiscal Years 2016–2018

Emerson Hunger Fellow

The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (USDA-FNS) just released new data regarding participation rates in SNAP between fiscal years (FY) 2016–2018. Of concern is the 18 percent gap between those who were eligible under federal rules in an average month in FY 2018 to receive SNAP versus those who actually participated in the program. While 36 million eligible individuals participated, another 8 million did not. Let’s explore a few of the many possible explanations for this SNAP gap.

May 13, 2021

The American Families Plan: A Strong Foundation to Ensure Children Have Access to Nutrition Year-Round

Deputy Director, School and Out-of-School Time Programs

On April 28, President Biden released the American Families Plan, a comprehensive plan that would help ensure that children have access to the nutrition they need year-round. These provisions would help eliminate summer childhood hunger and ensure access to free school meals to millions of students from low-income households. Additionally, this legislation would increase the number of high-poverty schools that can offer free meals to all students, support school nutrition operations and their efforts to provide healthy and appealing school meals, and eliminate unnecessary financial burdens on millions of households with low incomes.

May 06, 2021

The Summer Meals Act of 2021: A Game Changer for Combating Summer Hunger

Child Nutrition Policy Analyst

The Summer Nutrition Programs are critical supports for millions of families when the school year ends, yet they remain underutilized in many communities. There is an important opportunity through the upcoming Child Nutrition Reauthorization process to take lessons learned from the more than 50 years that the Summer Nutrition Programs have been operating to reenergize, reimagine, and reinvest in the key programs meant to fill the summer nutrition gap.
One key way to accomplish this is through the Summer Meals Act of 2021 (S. 1170 / H.R. 783), which would increase access to the Summer Nutrition Programs by eliminating common barriers to participation and by permanently incorporating many of the policies that have been an option during COVID-19.