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Program Assessment


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Food Stamp Program

The Food Stamp Program alleviates hunger and malnutrition among low-income individuals by providing eligible households coupons or electronic benefits redeemable for food at retail stores. It also supports State-administered nutrition education and employment and training assistance for food stamp recipients.


What This Rating Means

Moderately Effective

In general, a program rated Moderately Effective has set ambitious goals and is well-managed. Moderately Effective programs likely need to improve their efficiency or address other problems in the programs' design or management in order to achieve better results.
  • The program is efficient and achieves its performance goals. Food stamp benefits are well targeted to intended beneficiaries and virtually always spent for their intended purpose. The program achieves its goals to increase program participation and reduce payment error. For example, in 2005, only 5.8 percent of benefits were paid in error, exceeding the program's goal of 6.5 percent.
  • The program is better designed to reduce hunger and malnutrition related to inadequate income than to further improve the dietary status of low-income people. While the program supports nutrition education to improve the diets of program participants, these efforts would be more effective if they were better targeted and relied on interventions with demonstrated success.
  • Studies have proven that the program increases food expenditures among participants and the availability of nutrients in food at home. Limitations in measurement techniques make it difficult to show conclusively that program participation reduces hunger or increases nutrient intake.

Improvement Plan

About Improvement Plans

We are taking the following actions to improve the performance of the program:

  • Implementing a plan to improve the use of program funds for nutrition education.
  • Developing studies to demonstrate the impact of program participation on hunger and dietary status.

Learn More

The content on is developed by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget and Federal agencies.