By Kevin Gray
Recently, President Trump released his new budget plan. In the plan, he calls for a $17.2 Billion cut to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by 2019. In addition to the cuts, Trump is proposing that we replace monthly cash benefits with a food box delivery program, according to reports.
The report of this plan is being met with a lot of questions and some outrage. People are wondering why the government, and especially our president, wants to get involved in deciding what people eat every day. Many have pointed out that Trump himself has a poor diet and should not be in control of what a family can and can't eat with nutrition assistance funds.
As for the way the proposed program would work, White House budget director Mick Mulvaney compared the program to Blue Apron, an ingredient-and-recipe meal kit service. The Chicago Tribune notes SNAP provides roughly $125 per month to 42.2 million Americans, and the Agriculture Department would use part of those benefits to buy and deliver boxes of "homegrown" food. It's called "America's Harvest Box."
The Harvest Box would contain things like shelf-stable milk, juice, grains, cereals, pasta, peanut butter, beans, canned meat, poultry or fish, and canned fruits and vegetables. Since the boxes are valued at half of SNAP recipients monthly benefit, the remainder of their benefits would be put on electronic benefit cards, CNN Money reports.
Trump's administration says that implementing this change would save over $130 Billion over the next 10 years, although many consumer groups don't see that as being true.
With the announcement of this plan, the hashtag #BlueApronStyle has been trending on Twitter. Many people point out that the government can't handle simple tasks so how can they handle a food delivery service. Others have pointed out that can fruit, vegetables and meats are not exactly "homegrown" fresh foods and would be worse nutritionally.