Food Politics + Justice

Published on November 7th, 2011 | by Heather Carr


Food Stamp Challenge

The Food Stamp Challenge is a seven-day challenge asking participants to live on the standard weekly allotment for Food Stamp allotment of $31.50.

The Food Stamp Challenge is intended to call attention to the difficulties of finding enough food in this economy. Forty-nine million Americans are food-insecure.

What is Food Insecure?

Food insecure is not a euphemism for a lack of prime rib in the diet. It’s a very real condition where people aren’t sure where their next meal will come from.

Skipping meals or reducing the size of meals so that the kids will have enough to eat, going without food for several days in a row, running out of food before the next paycheck – these are all examples of food insecurity.

With food costs rising and incomes decreasing, more households have become food insecure in the last few years.

Food Stamp Challenge

Anyone who wants to attempt a Food Stamp Challenge is welcome to start at any time. Participants in the Food Stamp Challenge commit to living on a food stamp allowance for one week.

Seven days of food for $31.50? That comes to $4.50 per day, or $1.50 per meal. No fast food on that budget.  I’m pretty sure I couldn’t even afford chips and soda on $31.50 a week.

Image by feedpeoplenotdumpsters, used with Creative Commons license.

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About the Author

Heather Carr loves food, politics, and innovative ways to make the world a better place. She counts Jacques Pepin and Speed Racer among her inspirations. You can find her on Facebook or .

2 Responses to Food Stamp Challenge

  1. I had never heard of “food insecure.” Very scary and eye opening to think about it this way. I know we’ve had hard times in our family, but we’ve always been able to put food on the table. Scary to think about our kids eating once/day like some families. I wish we would all wake up a bit and stop gorging ourselves.

  2. Briana says:

    $31.5 dlls equal almost $427 mexican pesos.
    I’m vegan… and my expenses on food don’t exceed $350 (26 dlls) in a month.
    Of course i buy fresh vegetables and fruits every week and almost never get canned food. Rice, beans, oat meal lentils, pasta and wheat fluor makes magic when it comes to turn mi veggies into wondeful and delicious main plates.

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