Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Rates: Fiscal Years 2010 and 2011

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) helps low-income individuals purchase food so that they can obtain a nutritious diet. SNAP is the largest of the domestic food and nutrition assistance programs administered by the Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service. The participation rates presented in this report estimate the percentage of individuals eligible under federal SNAP income and asset rules who choose to participate in the program. From FY 2010 to FY 2011, the number of SNAP participants increased by 9 percent and the number of eligible individuals increased by about 2 percent. The participation rate was under 50 percent for eligible older adults (age 60 and older) however participate in this program is increasing among older adults, from 34.8% in FY2010 to 39.3% in FY2011.