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Wednesday, December 08, 2010 1:35 PM

Food Stamp Usage up 16.2% Nationally, over 20% in 13 States; Tables by State, Charts Nationally Since 1970 as % of Population

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The Wall Street Journal reports Food Stamp Rolls Continue to Rise

42.9 million people collected food stamps last month, up 1.2% from the prior month and 16.2% higher than the same time a year ago, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Nationwide 14% of the population relied on food stamps as of September but in some states the percentage was much higher. In Washington, D.C., Mississippi and Tennessee – the states with the largest share of citizens receiving benefits – more than a fifth of the population in each was collecting food stamps.
Click on the above link to see a table of all 50 states.

Sample Details

  • 16.2% Year-Over-Year Change Nationally
  • 39.1% Year-Over-Year Change in Idaho
  • 28.7% Year-Over-Year Change in Nevada
  • 27.2% Year-Over-Year Change in New Jersey
  • 26.0% Year-Over-Year Change in Rhode Island
  • 25.9% Year-Over-Year Change in Utah
  • 25.8% Year-Over-Year Change in Florida
  • 21.5% of population in D.C. on Food Stamps
  • 20.4% of population in Mississippi on Food Stamps
  • 20.1% of population in Tennessee on Food Stamps

13 states had greater than 20% gains in food stamp usage. Not all of them were housing bubble states. Idaho led the way with a 39.1% year-over-year change.

Six states had a 25% change or greater. Texas just missed at 24.6%

The food stamp program is now called SNAP. It stands for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

Reader Tim Wallace has a couple of national charts I wish to share. Click on either chart for a sharper image.

Snap Participants by Year Since 1970

SNAP as a Percentage of the US Population

Tim Wallace writes ...
SNAP numbers for September just came on line, 42,911,042 - up from 42,389,614 in August, an increase of 521,428 in one month.

Furthermore, SNAP participation is now up 5,992,094 from September of '09 and up 11,528,481 from September of '08 - just before the election based on "Change You Can Believe In".
Mike "Mish" Shedlock
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