Buy American; President Budget Proposes SNAP Changes

President Trump's budget plan proposes major changes to SNAP ( MGN )

(Bloomberg) -- In what would be one of the biggest shakeups of the U.S. food-stamp program in its five-decade history, President Donald Trump is proposing to slash cash payments and substitute them with "100 percent American grown food" given to recipients.

The changes, outlined Monday in Trump’s budget proposal, would reshape the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, which supports roughly one in eight Americans, by reducing cash spending by about one-third from current levels.

The plan is projected to save $214 billion over a decade. It would give all households receiving more than $90 a month in cash a "USDA Food" package that would "include items such as shelf-stable milk, ready to eat cereals, pasta, peanut butter, beans and canned fruit, vegetables, and meat, poultry or fish," according to the proposal.

The food stamp program served 42.2 million people and 20.9 million households, on average, during the 2017 fiscal year. The average household benefit was $254.14, putting most homes well above the threshold for the proposed direct assistance. The program itself cost $68.1 billion, with $63.7 billion given out as benefits.