September 29th, 2009 | Posted in Income/Poverty
by Mark Mather, associate vice president, Domestic Programs
Today the Census Bureau released another wave of economic data that showed a 13 percent increase in U.S. households receiving food stamps between 2007 and 2008. Who saw the biggest increase? It was families with two or more workers, who made up 26.9 percent of food stamp recipients in 2007 but jumped to 28.4 of recipients in 2008. The numbers, based on new data from the American Community Survey (ACS), provide more evidence of the recession’s wide-reaching impact, especially on lower-income working families.
Nationwide, about 9 percent of U.S. households reported receiving food stamps in 2008, according to ACS data. But ACS respondents are known to underreport participation in the Food Stamp Program. (For more information, see this report from the Census Bureau). The USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service, which administers the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program at the federal level, counted 12.7 million households receiving food stamps in 2008, compared with 9.8 million counted in the ACS. The latest numbers from the USDA, from June 2009, puts the number of households receiving food stamp benefits at nearly 16 million.
Photo used under Creative Commons from Clementine Gallot.