Last Friday when the calendar flipped over from September to October there was good news for Louisiana families that depend on SNAP benefits. Those benefits have been increased. Yes, for the first time in four and half decades the United States Department of Agriculture made a cost adjustment increase in their Thrifty Food Plan.

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Shavana Howard who is an Assistant Secretary for Family Support with the Department of Children and Family Services said that the increase will translate to about $36 dollars per person per household.  However, the average monthly food stamp benefit will increase anywhere from twelve to twenty dollars per person.

SNAP is an acronym for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. It helps those in need provide healthy food choices for their families. The modest increase in the Thrifty Food Program should allow for Louisiana residents to use their benefits to purchase more fish and red and orange vegetables.

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The program is administered by the United States Department of Agriculture and provides nutrition benefits to low-income individuals and families to purchase food at stores.

The reevaluation of the Thrifty Food Program, which will allow families and households a little more spending power, has been adjusted to reflect the current prices at today's grocery stores and markets. The added benefits will also allow for providers to purchase healthier choices and better options for their family's nutritional needs too.

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The current increase marks a jump of 21% when compared to the previous benefits plan. The way the math works out, it's an additional $1.19 per day per beneficiary. If you're not sure if you qualify for SNAP benefits or you're not sure how to sign up for them, that can be done online at the Department of Children and Family Services website. 

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