Federal Programs >
The following is a list of nutrition assistance programs administered by the Food and Nutrition Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and other federal government agencies. For more information, please click on the links below, which will direct you to the specified program’s webpage.
Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)
Each day CACFP provides nutritious meals and snacks to children and adults. CACFP reaches adults who receive care in nonresidential adult day care centers as well as children residing in homeless shelters, and snacks and suppers to youths participating in eligible after school care programs.
Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP)
CSFP works to improve the health of low-income elderly people at least 60 years of age by supplementing their diets with nutritious USDA commodity foods.
Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP)
The WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) provides fresh, unprocessed, locally grown fruits and vegetables from local farmers’ markets to Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) recipients.
Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR)
FDPIR is a Federal program that provides commodity foods to low-income households, including the elderly, living on Indian reservations, and to Native American families residing in designated areas near reservations.
Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program
The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program provides free fresh fruits and vegetables in participating elementary schools nationwide. The purpose of the program is to increase children’s fresh fruit and vegetable consumption and at the same time combat childhood obesity by improving children’s overall diet and create healthier eating habits to impact their present and future health.
Hunger Free Communities USDA Grant Program
The Hunger Free Communities grant program was created to provide public funding for comprehensive and collaborative efforts to end hunger at the community level. Through these grants, the U.S. Department of Agriculture seeks to identify new strategies or combinations of strategies that support the creation of Hunger-Free Communities by helping fund research, planning, and hunger relief activities including but not limited to: food distribution, community outreach, initiatives that improve access to food, and the development of new resources and strategies to reduce or prevent hunger and food insecurity.
National School Lunch Program (NSLP)
School districts and independent schools that choose to take part in the lunch program get cash subsidies and donated commodities from the USDA for each meal they serve. In return, they must serve lunches that meet Federal requirements, and they must offer free or reduced price lunches to eligible children.
Older Americans Act Nutrition Program (OAA)
The Older Americans Act Nutrition Program provides meals and related nutrition services to older individuals in a variety of settings including congregate facilities such as senior centers; or by home-delivery to older individuals who are homebound due to illness, disability, or geographic isolation.
School Breakfast Program (SBP)
The School Breakfast Program operates in the same manner as the National School Lunch Program.School districts and independent schools that choose to take part in the breakfast program receive cash subsidies from the USDA for each meal they serve. In return, they must serve breakfasts that meet Federal requirements, and they must offer free or reduced-price breakfasts to eligible children.
Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP)
The Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program awards grants to States, United States territories, and federally-recognized Indian tribal governments to provide low-income seniors with coupons that can be exchanged for eligible foods at farmers’ markets, roadside stands, and community supported agriculture programs.
Special Milk Program (SMP)
Participating schools and institutions receive reimbursement from the USDA for each half pint of milk served. They must operate their milk programs on a non-profit basis. They agree to use the Federal reimbursement to reduce the selling price of milk to all children.
SFSP ensures that low-income children continue to receive nutritious meals when school is not in session. The program, for children 18 years and under, operates at approved SFSP sites. In SFSP, there are three common types of sites: open sites, closed enrolled sites, and camps (residential and nonresidential). Open sites are those where meals are made available to all children in the area on a first come, first served basis. Both open and restricted open sites must serve children in geographical areas where 50 percent or more of the children residing in the school attendance area are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals.
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
SNAP (formerly the Food Stamp Program) puts healthy food within reach for millions of people each month via an EBT card used to purchase food at participating grocery stores and farmer markets. Through nutrition education partners, SNAP helps clients learn to make healthy eating and active lifestyle choices.
The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP)
TEFAP is a Federal program that helps supplement the diets of low-income needy persons, including elderly people, by providing them with emergency food and nutrition assistance. Under TEFAP, commodity foods are made available by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to States. States provide the food to local agencies that they have selected, usually food banks, which in turn, distribute the food to soup kitchens and food pantries that directly serve the public.
Women, Infants and Children (WIC)
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children serves to safeguard the health of low-income women, infants, & children up to age 5 who are at nutritional risk by providing nutritious foods to supplement diets, information on healthy eating, breast feeding support, and referrals to health care.