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What Should People Be Allowed To Buy With Food Stamps?

By Edited Jan 18, 2016 2 13

Food Stamp Shirt
Have you ever been standing in line to pay cash for your groceries using your hard earned money when you seen the person in front of you paying with Food Stamps and got upset. You have to work hard for your money and when you shop for groceries you have to buy the generic brands in order to afford your groceries. The person paying with food stamps has name brands for all products, T-Bone steaks, Coca-Cola, and expensive snack foods.

This frustrates a lot of people because you work hard for your money and then these people who may not even be working get to eat the best foods for free while you have to buy generic products for your family to eat. Instead of T-Bone steaks for you and the wife like the food stamp family you are eating Hamburger Helper with the kids. It's not fair you may be thinking.

What Should People Be Allowed To Buy With Food Stamps? With food stamps you can buy almost any food item in the grocery store. You can not buy beer or pre-cooked foods but other than those limits you can buy almost everything else in the Grocery Store.

Some people think that food stamps should be limited to milk, beans and rice. The basic staples and nothing else. Why should we allow people to buy Brand name Soda Pop with their food stamps? Why should we allow people to buy soda pop at all with their food stamps? If they are poor why can they not just drink water?

Food Stamps is a program to help feed families. Food Stamps for the most part is a great program but as with all social programs designed to help people their will always be some fraud as there is with the Unemployment Insurance.

The irony of some of these social programs is when a State such as Idaho lays off some of its' State workers. The State needs to make budget cuts so it lays off some workers so the state can supposedly save some money. The same workers that are laid off now qualify for Food Stamps and Unemployment Insurance benefit checks. The irony is the state cut money by laying off these workers but now the State is paying these workers with Food Stamps and unemployment checks.

Do you think that we should limit what families can buy with food stamps? Should we ban the purchase of Soda Pop and Ice Cream with food stamps? If so is it fair that the children will be kept from eating and drinking certain foods? It's not the children's fault…is it? What do you think about limiting what people can buy at the grocery store with food stamps?

What if someone is working full time yet they still qualify for food stamps? Should these people be allowed to purchase soda but still not allow food stamp recipients' who are not working to receive food stamps?

There is always going to be a continued debate on food stamps and there are no clear cut answers. What Should People Be Allowed To Buy With Food Stamps? What do you think?



Jun 12, 2010 9:58am
I'm not really sure what people should be able to buy with food stamps. You made some great points! :)
Jun 12, 2010 11:39am
People on food stamps buy soda before mil becaue you an get generic soda for 79 cents a 2 liter and milk is almost 4 dollars for one gallon. The soda goes much further. Chips are cheaper than carrots.

You raise some good points, Ernie. I think it would be difficult to limit what people can buy.
Jun 12, 2010 5:03pm
I never thought about how soda pop is cheaper than milk but that is so true.
Jun 12, 2010 5:06pm
I never thought about how soda pop is cheaper than milk but that is so true.
Jun 26, 2010 5:32pm
You made some interesting points. Here are my thoughts. I live in California. In California, there is a tax on soda and also a crv deposit. Poeple that receive food stamps do not have to pay the tax or the deposit on the soda when they pay for it using their food stamps. Why are they excluded just because they are low income and qualify for food stamps? I work hard for my money and make too much to qualify for food stamps, but barely. Why do i have to pay tax and crv and not them just because they have food stamps and I don't. People should not be able to purchase any item that has a tax on it, by using food stamps. If they want a soda, they can pay cash of it, like i have to. As far as the kids go, sodas are not healthy and food stamps are supposed to help children eat healthy food. If their parents allow then to drink sodas, then the parents should have to pay cash for the soda. Childhood obesity is only getting worse in this country and kids drinking soda pop is a huge part of that. On another note, I know of some people that receive food stamps who buy soda with their food stamps, then dump out the soda and take the soda containers to their local recycling center and cash them in for the CRV deposit, then they go buy alcohol or cigarettes. What a waste of tax payer dollars. If an item has a tax then food stamps should not be used to purchase that item. Plain and simple.
Jun 29, 2010 12:47pm
Hi Ernie; Great article! Limiting food choices to the basics for recipients of food stamps would be quite a debate. I don't believe people would ever use the argument you raise against allowing the purchase of name brands and expensive cuts of meat on the basis that many working people can't afford such luxuries. However, if you frame the debate to be a health issue, then it would be in accord with the restrictions some states are putting on fast food restaurants in an effort to help people eat healthier, as well as the higher taxes on cigarettes to discourage people from smoking (for their health). Also, with Government run healthcare, these types of restrictions could be put in place for health reasons (although I don't anticipate the current Administration will bring up this issue any time soon). In addition, the idea would be in harmony with Ms. Obama's campaign against childhood obesity. Just something to ponder. ;o)
Jul 6, 2010 10:35pm
This information is so biased, serves no purpose and is just plain meaningless. So what if you're mad about these flimsy points regarding the EBT food program, brand vs.generic? People are a part of the program for a reason and can use the resources as long as the rules are followed. As in everything in life we all have the opportunity to make our own decisions.
Oct 10, 2010 1:29pm
I agree 100%!!!
Jul 12, 2010 5:48pm
I prefer to worry about how to make these benefits non-transferable or for the purposes it is originally intended. A co-worker once bragged about how she was able to purchase $100 worth of food stamps for $30 from someone she knows. How do you stop this kind of fraud?
Jul 31, 2010 7:25am
I appreciate your observations and frustrations. First, food stamps do not cover toilet paper, tampons, paper goods in general. If you have a pet that is also an expense you have to cover. I am educated past a bachelor's and the economy has kicked me in the butt. So I had no choice but to apply for food stamps. They have prevented me from sinking and I am filled with gratitude every time my card is credited. Since this is a federally funded program taxes would be redundant, to clear that up. As for what people are throwing in there cart, books could be written on that. From my experience, many do not understand price comparison, do not understand basic nutrition, and never really have had to think like you have on buying generics etc. I do buy good stuff with my food stamps, mixed in with the beans and rice and always stocking up on great sale items that I use frequently. But I have watched many run out of money because they spent all of it at once and they really just lack some basic knowledge of mastering the ****** mentality. Yes some will always abuse the system and the system isn't perfect. People have to eat and I think spending energy on restricting what they can buy would be so much better spent on other aspects of the system. I know case workers that would like some of the paper goods to be included. I think allowing pet products would be a huge help. People who have children receive a generous amount and part of them sell some of the food stamps to pay for diapers, TP, etc. Try to look in their carts with compassion. The long term health effects, the meats that disgust me, the junk food that impacts their health.... When I no longer need them I will always be grateful that I had them, But trust me you are in a much better place in many ways that you do not even see or understand when in that grocery line.
Oct 10, 2010 1:19pm
I think that is ridiculous. How can u tell someone what to buy with their own foodstamps. You should be able to buy whatever you want with foodstamps. Its about choices. If you choose to buy unhealthy food that is your choice. You can't make people eat healthy. You don't need to go after the people with food stamps, you need to go after the people who make and distribute the sodas and unhealthy foods!!! Taking it off of food stamps is not going to stop people from buying and drinking it!
Oct 10, 2010 1:24pm
The comment someone made about if the people rceiving food stamps are poor than they should just drink water. That is the most craziest thing I have ever heard! Who would say that. I know some people who have lived relatively wealthy lives, but since the economy has changed they now receive food stamps, and just because they receive food stamps they should just drink water, they should be able to drink whatever they wish!!!!
Mar 1, 2011 11:59am
90% of grocery store products are processed renditions of sugar, wheat, dairy, corn and soy....these foods may underlie many of the chronic diseases in our country and they are all highly subsidized. For the gov't to subsidize these ingredients, and then not let people buy them, would seem a bit contradictory, wouldn't make the corporate lobbyists too happy either. You have former food company/agriculture company execs sitting on the councils and so forth making these decisions. It's a flawed system but without speaking out or taking it on yourself not to buy these products in the first place.
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