Thursday, 19 March 2009

Farm spending attributable to WIC

USDA's report on WIC this week estimates that the program leads to about $4.6 billion in annual food spending. Of this, perhaps 26% is "additional" spending that would not have occurred in the absence of the program.

Even in the recently redesigned food package, the leading product categories are still milk and infant formula, followed by cereals, fruits and vegetables, and cheese.

Because farm sector support is a key part of the trustworthy advocacy coalition behind the WIC program, the computations of farm-level impact are interesting. USDA estimates that $1.3 billion in annual demand for farm products can be attributed to WIC.

The full program name is the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children.

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