Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and Rural Households

Our newest research paper finds the stereotype of SNAP as an urban, minority program is contrary to recent data. SNAP is a critical program to address food insecurity in rural America and to combat rural hunger.

  • From 2008 to 2012, 14.6% of rural households received SNAP benefits. That is a higher percentage than households receiving SNAP in both metropolitan and micropolitan (small city) areas.
  • Rural areas and small cities both have higher proportions of their households with senior and child residents receiving SNAP than do larger urban areas and the nation as a whole.
  • Rural SNAP participation rates – those eligible for SNAP benefits and receiving them – are significantly greater than urban participation rates. Nearly 86% of eligible rural residents receive SNAP benefits compared to nearly 73% of eligible urban residents.

It is incumbent for rural people and policymakers to realize the importance of SNAP to rural people and rural communities. Certain rural households – those with seniors and children – desperately rely on SNAP benefits to make ends meet.

Download the report below as a pdf.

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PDF icon snap-and-rural-households.pdf294.26 KB