AirTalk for September 12, 2013

Federal bill would ban “junk food” from food stamps purchases

Should there be a junk food ban on food stamps?

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Should there be a junk food ban on food stamps?

A lawmaker in Tennessee has proposed a legislation that would ban people from using their food stamps on buying junk food. The Healthy Food Choices Act, H.R. 3073, forwarded by Rep. Phil Roe (R-Tenn) revives an age-old debate on whether conditions should be placed on how money from the government's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) should be spent.

Supporters of the bill, including groups that promote healthy eating, say that state and local governments should encourage healthier food and beverage purchases by participants in the SNAP program. Detractors, however, say the junk food ban basically punishes the poor for being poor.

Guests:

Susan Levin, a dietitian and director of nutrition education at Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine

Lucy Nolan, executive director of End Hunger Connecticut


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