Increasing Food Access Through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

New research published in the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics found a positive influence on the revised Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children and food packages on access to healthy foods. The revised program included cash-value vouchers for fruits and vegetables, new whole-grain products, lower fat content in dairy foods, and reduced juice quantities.

Hunger in America, New Sundance 2012 Documentary

‘Finding North' examines hunger in the US and the serious economic, social and cultural implications for the nation.  The film argues that 49 million Americas are hungry and profiles three Americans that shed light on food insecurity, diet related diseases, and government spending on food stamps and childhood nutrition programs.

New program doubles the value of food stamps at farmers markets in Memphis

GrowMemphis has introduced a new program at participating farmers markets called Double Green$ to give shoppers using Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits more purchasing power to increase access to healthy, local, fresh food.  Double Green$ will provide a dollar-for-dollar match up to $10 for shoppers spending SNAP benefits.

Fair Food Network

Fair Food Network is a non-profit, based in Ann Arbor Michigan, that is focused on building a more sustianable and just food system. Their resource page includes food access related links to reports, case studies, and policy and advocacy tools.

USDA Economic Research Service (ERS)

The USDA ERS website has many food access related resources including:

  • A Publications webpage with over 800 reports on nutrition, farm economy, policy topics, and the  rural economy
  • The ERS Food Security Briefing Room webpage covers the history of food security, statistics on food hardship and key terms involved in dealing with food security
  • Food Environmental Atlas page provides a spatial overview of a community's ability to access food
  • State Fact Sheets include information on “population, income, education, employment, federal funds, organic agriculture, farm characteristics, farm financial indicators, top commodities, and exports.”

USDA Food and Nutrition Services (FNS)

The FNS research webpage includes resources on the SNAP (food stamp) program, WIC, food insecurity, nutrition education, child nutrition and food distribution studies. The FNS regulations webpage includes legislation resources for school meals programs, SNAP, summer meal service, WIC, and the Child, Adult and Elderly Care Food Program.

The Food Assistance Program webpage provides resources to Food Distribution on Indian Reservations, Hunger and Food Insecurity, elderly nutrition programs, and head start.

Food Research and Action Center (FRAC)

The FRAC data and publication page provides food hardship data by Congressional district and national, state and county-by-county SNAP participation data from across the US, and also has several reports on US poverty with data provided by the US Census Bureau. Their Legislative Action Center provides resources and advocacy tools to fight hunger, tools to promote anti-hunger policies in the 2012 Farm Bill, and an overview and updates on budget issues affecting anti-hunger legislation.

Pew Charitable Trust

The Pew Charitable Trust’s Food and Health initiative covers topics such as food safety, food additives, produce safety, and school food. Their Safe and Healthy Foods Campaign recommends policies to increase nutrition standards in schools, and ways to implement rigorous school food safety policies.

Roots of Change

Roots of Change is a network in California whose goal is to establish a more sustainable food system by 2030. The issues they focus on include economic prosperity, environment and climate, healthy food access, and valued workforce. On their Healthy Food Access website, there are resources for non-profits, entrepreneurs, and farmers and ranchers.

WHY Hunger

The WHY Hunger resource page includes reports on hunger, advocacy tools, federal nutrition policy tools, and farm to school program models. Their resource directory is a searchable database of food pantries, health care services, economic development resources and anti poverty organizations. Their Food Security Learning Center page includes information on a wide variety of food access topics such as farm to school, land use planning, local and regional food systems, and climate change.

The Center for Food and Justice at Occidental College

The Center for Food and Justice at the Urban and Environmental Policy Institute publications page covers topics including farm to school and other farm to institution programs, and food access case studies from across the Los Angeles area.

The Farmers Market Coalition

The Farmers Market Coalition resource library is intended for vendors, farmers, market managers, inspectors, and consumers and covers a wide range of topics including funding, promotion and marketing, insurance and liability, management and operations, EBT and evaluation. The coalition’s website offers resources for farmers markets including webinars, and policy and advocacy tools.

Healthy Foods Here

The goal of the Healthy Foods Project project, which is a collaboration between King County Public Health Department and the Seattle Office of Economic Development, is to make healthy food available in the county by supporting local businesses and providing resources on healthy foods. Some of the resources on the website include merchandising tips to help retailers sell healthy foods, a produce manual that provides basic care information on over 50 types of produce. Their resource guides for produce store owners are currently available in English, Spanish, Somali and Korean.

Michigan Good Food Charter

The Michigan Good Food Charter presents a vision for Michigan’s food and agriculture system and outlines 25 agenda priorities for the next 10 years. Other resources on this website include a food system infrastructure report, and an institutional food purchasing report.


Access to Affordable and Nutritious Food: Measuring and Understanding Food Deserts and their Consequences: Report to Congress 2009

This USDA Economic Research Service report presents findings from a one year study used to determine the problems of limited food access, considers the effects of limited access on local populations, and outlines recommendations for how to address the problem.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program at Farmers Markets: A How To Handbook

This how-to guide to accepting SNAP benefits at farmers markets addresses how to install EBT machines, how to become a SNAP retailer, and how to make sure a SNAP EBT program succeeds at a farmers market. The handbook also provides case studies and offers examples of successful farmers market EBT programs.