Got milk?

USDA is helping to make sure more consumers do with a significant expansion of the Healthy Fluid Milk Incentives Projects (HFMIP), a pilot program that provides a dollar-for-dollar match to participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) when they purchase healthy fluid milk options at qualifying food retail outlets.

USDA recently awarded $3 million in new funding to Auburn University’s Hunger Solutions Institute (HSI) to bring the program to SNAP beneficiaries in an additional four states and 116 retail outlets, including those on federal Indian Reservations, urban and rural areas and numerous locations in economically distressed communities.

The International Dairy Foods Association lauded the move, highlighting HSI’s strong background in administering SNAP incentives for healthy fruits and vegetables.

“Expanding the SNAP Healthy Fluid Milk Incentives Projects means greater access to affordable, nutritious dairy products for the most vulnerable Americans,” IDFA President and CEO Michael Dykes said in a statement. “The latest federal Dietary Guidelines for Americans report showed that more than 90% of Americans do not consume enough dairy products to meet daily nutrition requirements, impeding positive health outcomes for Americans of all ages.”

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IDFA has suggested in recent months that the White House support expanding HFMIP to become a national dairy incentive program that incorporates a wider variety of healthy, affordable dairy products that improve health outcomes for Americans.

The Baylor Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty will continue to administer HFMIP pilot programs in 42 stores in Texas and New Jersey while Auburn’s Hunger Solutions Institute initiates additional pilot programs in Alabama, California, Georgia and South Dakota.

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