Congress has been delaying additional relief for the underprivileged citizens while food prices in the country have gone up. This is the reason food stamp recipients will be receiving more money in order to be able to afford groceries. This response is automatic and will help needy citizens.
The US Department of Agriculture has reported that the maximum benefit has increased by 5.3%.
The average cost of living every year is estimated to increase by 2%, however, this year the cost has increased more than double the average. The basis of the boost is the average cost of a food plan designed by the USDA.
Amidst the pandemic, demand for grocery items is increasing as people are avoiding going to restaurants and eating out. Most Americans are staying in and preparing their meals at home. As a result, grocery prices are soaring.
According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the coronavirus pandemic has had a huge effect on grocery prices. Meat and poultry prices have spiked, with beef witnessing the highest increase. Moreover, pork, eggs, cereals, and fresh vegetables have also seen a surge in prices.
This rise in prices is a result of delays and disruptions in the supply chain and operations which leads to scarcities; however, there is no notable shortage.
For months now, the Democrats have been advocating for the maximum benefit to be increased to 15%, but to no avail. Lawmakers have not added this to the relief packages designed to counter the effect of the pandemic; however, other improvements have been made to federal nutrition programs.
Previously, a household of four people used to get $646 a month in food stamps but since the cost of living has increased, the amount has been increased to $680.
In a coronavirus rescue bill that was passed in March, Congress allowed all states to supply food stamp beneficiaries the maximum benefit. According to the US Census Bureau, as many as 30 million out of 249 million people have reported that they do not have sufficient food to eat.
Moreover, the director of the Institute of Policy Research has also reported that there has been a 7.3% increase in the number of households that complained about not having enough to eat.
The recipients of the food stamps, formally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, will be in effect starting this month.