Food Stamp Recipients Top 46 Million for 35th Straight Month

By Ali Meyer | October 7, 2014 | 2:03 PM EDT

(CNSNews.com) - The number of Americans on food stamps has topped 46,000,000 for 35 straight months, according to data from the Department of Agriculture (USDA).

From September 2011 through July 2014, the latest month for which data is available, the number of persons participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) has exceeded 46 million. As of July 2014, there were 46,486,434 beneficiaries of the SNAP program.

ype="node" title="food stamp participation chart

While the number of persons participating in SNAP in July declined slightly from the 46,496,252 who were participating in June, the number of households participating increased in that same time frame from 22,714,042 in June to 22,715,583 in July.

In fiscal year 1969, the average monthly participation in the SNAP program was 2,878,000. In fiscal year 2013, it was 47,636,000, an increase of 44,758,000 or 1,555 percent.

ype="node" title="food stamp chart monthly

In 1969, the national population stood at 202,676,946, meaning the 2,878,000 persons on food stamps represented 1.4 percent of the population. In 2013, the national population stood at 316,128,839, meaning the 47,636,000 average persons participating in SNAP represented 15.1 percent of the population.

In 2013, one in five American households, or 20 percent, participated in the SNAP program. In 2013, there were 23,052,396 households that participated in the SNAP program, which was 20 percent of the 115,013,000 population.

The business and economic reporting of CNSNews.com is funded in part with a gift made in memory of Dr. Keith C. Wold.