Food Stamps for Soda
August 19th, 2011

The federal Department of Agriculture has rejected the Bloomberg administration’s bid to bar New Yorkers from using food stamps to purchase soda sweetened with sugar.

The city made its request last fall, proposing a two-year test to see how effective a ban might be. The move part of the administration’s campaign against obesity — came after the state legislature rejected efforts to put a tax on the sugary beverage.

While soda lobbyists, of course, objected to the restriction on food stamp use, even many public health experts questioned it from the get-go, fearing that it unfairly singled out people who receive food stamp. The agriculture department always seemed unlikely to approve the ban, and some questioned whether it even had the authority to do so without congressional approval.

Rather than a ban, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack reportedly said in a letter, the department prefers to promote ” incentive-based solutions that are better suited for the working families, elderly and other low-income individuals” who get food stamps.

In a statement, Mayor Michael Bloomberg expressed disappointment with the decision. “We think our innovative pilot would have done more to protect people from the crippling effects of preventable illnesses like diabetes and obesity than anything being proposed anywhere else in this country and at little or no cost to taxpayers,” the statement said.

By on August 19, 2011, 5:49 pm
In category: City Hall,Gotham City,Health,Social Services | 4 Comments »

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4 Responses to “Food Stamps for Soda”

  1. factchecker Says:
    August 20th, 2011 at 12:58 am

    The USDA rejected the ban but bloomberg made a wrong move, instead he should have given credits for vegetables or healtheir food, although iceberg lettuce is not the healthiest vegetable,
    singling out one item is no help, should we ban ice tea or gatorade but not chocolate milkshakes, and sugary fruit juices? I more wise r proposal which I do not support would be to ban drinks with more than say 25 grams of sugar be cup including milk and fruit juices, diet sodas would not be included but they have no nutrition, there is nothing wrong with sugar, fat, or protein as long as it is not in excess, bread can be filling and it turns into sugar.

  2. Cassy Says:
    August 23rd, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    I agree with the Department of Agriculture, fighting obesity will be a tough battle and I don’t think banning soda will be a quick fix to the problem. What we’ll fall into again with the ban is control of this target group, increased health issues/expenses and increased cost for items that are supposedly more healthy, that are certainly more costly and some even less beneficial to your health. A can of soda with 150 calories vs 4 fruit juices at 50 calories each, in the end the one out wieghs the other. I think if we get more health conscious and more informed on weight control what we eat or drink can be a managable individual responsibility!

  3. concierge Says:
    September 21st, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    it seems to be pretty good,cheers

  4. Capresso Says:
    September 30th, 2011 at 1:06 am

    Yo Dude! not to change the subject, but don’t forget that today is National Coffee Day! Free coffee from several of the biger outfits. There is a list of national and local retailers participating.

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