Trump administration proposes plan to deliver food to low-income households

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The Trump administration is proposing replacing a portion of the federal food stamp program with actual boxes of food delivered to recipients' front doors, putting the US government directly in charge of what goes on the dinner plates of more than 16 million low-income households.

His administration is now proposing a food delivery program that would replace about half of food stamp benefits for households who qualify for the boxes. According to Politico, the box would contain "100 percent US grown and produced food" and would feature foods like "shelf-stable milk, peanut butter, canned fruits and meats, and cereal".

The "USDA America's Harvest Box" would contain items such as shelf-stable milk, juice, grains, cereals, pasta, peanut butter, beans, canned meat, poultry or fish, and canned fruits and vegetables.

The box would cut the current monthly monetary SNAP component in half, leaving the remaining funds to be spent as the recipient sees fit.

"You actually receive the food instead of receiving the cash", White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said in a press conference. No fresh fruits or vegetables would be included. "The dramatic reductions came as part of a budget proposal that made sweeping, across-the-board cuts to popular safety net programs, including federal housing subsidies and Medicaid".

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"Who's to say what would be in the box of food, whether it'd be enough of there available to feed everyone", said Sloter. So instead of giving families food stamps, Trump and his administration will seek to give food boxes. Probably the River Bend Food Bank.

The USDA predicts that this change could save over $129 billion in ten years, and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue is hailing the plan as a "bold, innovative approach" that would save taxpayers money while delivering the same "level of food value". The program slashes were announced after Trump provided corporate tax savings of more than $1.2 trillion annually. The White House also did not explain how SNAP recipients with food allergies or other dietary issues would be affected. They feared it would upend a much-needed benefit for more than 80% of those in the program.

Except SNAP is one of the most efficient government programs, with some of the lowest numbers for misuse.

Boxed or canned food is typically packed with sodium and sugar, two additives that the USDA and nutritionists have repeatedly said that Americans need to cut back on.

Advocates say that while encouraging people to work is fundamentally a good thing, imposing strict requirements on already vulnerable populations could be disastrous for those in need.

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