SNAP Facts

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SNAP is our nation’s most significant investment to prevent hunger. Unfortunately, the pitched debates about SNAP both in Congress and in the media have included myths and misinformation about the need for SNAP, its effectiveness and its efficiency. Here are the important facts you need to know about SNAP.

1.  Hunger is a real problem in the United States.
Fact:  One in six Americans faces hunger every day. (Source: Feeding America)
Fact:  More than 47 million Americans rely on SNAP to put food on the table. (Source: USDA)

2.  SNAP helps low-income people have healthier lives.
Fact:  Cuts to SNAP will increase food insecurity, which has profound health implications, including increased risk of diabetes, heart disease and asthma. (Source: Health Impact Project)
Fact:  Produce, grains, meats, and dairy comprise almost 90% of the food that SNAP households buy. (Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities)

3.  SNAP is a temporary, short-term solution that helps people get back on their feet.
Fact: Half of SNAP participants entering the program are enrolled 10 months or less and 38% leave within six months. (Source: FRAC)
Fact:  More than half of SNAP recipients leave the program within a year. (Source: FRAC)

4.  The vast majority of SNAP recipients who are able to work do so.   
Fact:  92% of SNAP recipients are either working or aren’t expected to work because they are children, elderly or disabled. (Source: USDA)

5.  SNAP is a model of government efficiency.
Fact:  Nearly 95% of the budget for SNAP goes to benefits; less than 5% is spent in program administration. (Source: USDA)
Fact:  The error rate for SNAP payments is less than 4%. (Source: USDA)

6.  Strong administration of SNAP has virtually eliminated fraud and abuse from the program.
Fact:  The trafficking rate is at an all-time low: only 1¢ of every SNAP dollar issued is diverted.  (Source: USDA)
Fact:  Fewer than 2% of SNAP benefits are issued to households that do not meet all of the program’s eligibility requirements. (Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities)

7.  SNAP helps to boost the economy.
Fact:  Every $1 in SNAP benefits generates $1.73 in economic activity. (Source: Moody’s)
Fact:  The USDA reports that more than 90 percent of SNAP benefits are redeemed at supercenters, supermarkets, and small, medium, and large grocery stores. (Source: FRAC)