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Jordan Baker                                                              

Statement attributable to Luis Guardia, President, Food Research & Action Center (FRAC)

WASHINGTON, August 10, 2023 — The Food Research & Action Center strongly opposes the SNAP Nutrition Security Act of 2023. The bill is a step towards restricting food access for the tens of millions of households who rely on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to put food on the table by requiring the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service (USDA-FNS) to collect data on how SNAP participants spend their benefits.

FRAC has long believed in maintaining the ability of individuals to purchase the foods they need to meet their families’ dietary and cultural needs rather than foods decided by the government within SNAP. FRAC also has maintained that SNAP customers should not be treated differently than other purchasers based on their method of payment.  Targeting a specific population creates greater inequity by setting back the strides the program has made in eliminating stigma experienced by people relying on nutrition assistance.

Additional and unnecessary mandates will increase administrative challenges and could take much-needed resources away from making SNAP more effective.  This bill will harm SNAP participants and is fiscally irresponsible. In addition, research has already shown that there is no difference in the food baskets of individuals with low incomes on SNAP or without SNAP.

This bill also will create a significant financial burden and be extremely difficult for USDA-FNS and retailers, especially small or independent grocers in rural areas, to implement. This also could result in fewer retailers participating in SNAP in already under resourced areas. Moreover, SNAP does not cover a family’s entire grocery bill and, as such, data collected will not provide an accurate picture of a household’s total grocery bill.

The pandemic shined a light on the importance of increased benefits to purchase healthy foods. The temporary SNAP Emergency Allotments allowed families to better afford the food they needed while lifting or keeping them out of poverty. Now that these benefit boosts have ended, families are experiencing a hunger cliff like we have never seen with the average SNAP benefit now being less than $6 per person a day. This is unacceptable. Adequate benefits matter.

FRAC urges members of Congress to reject this bill and focus its efforts on protecting and strengthening SNAP benefit adequacy and improving equitable access. This would further SNAP’s role in improving public health by supporting food security and dietary intake.

Hungry people can’t wait.


The Food Research & Action Center improves the nutrition, health, and well-being of people struggling against poverty-related hunger in the United States through advocacy, partnerships, and by advancing bold and equitable policy solutions. To learn more, visit and follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.