Food stamps for soda, should this be allowed?

KREM 2's Danamarie McNicholl Carter looks into a new Florida law that makes it illegal to buy soda and stuff with food stamps, and if Washington should do something like this.

SPOKANE, Wash --- An article from Florida caused a commotion when KREM posted in online. A proposed bill would prohibit people from buying soda with food stamps.

According to the USDA, households receiving food stamps get about $255 a month and a single person receives only $126 a month. This comes out to around $1.40 per meal.

Some items you cannot purchase are alcohol, cigarettes, tobacco, non-food items like pet food or household supplies, vitamins, medicines, live animals and hot foods from the deli area of a supermarket.

You can purchase breads, fruits, vegetables, meats, fish, dairy products, infant formula, baby food, soda, candy and cookies.

There were a lot of comments on KREM’s Facebook post about the influence the government should have over purchasing decisions.

Some people thought kids should just be kids and having a soda or some candy once in a while does not hurt.

Others argued food stamps should be used for things with nutritional value and they would support a bill that banned the purchase of sugary substances with food stamps.

One parent who has used an EBT card felt the same way. She agreed that food stamps should be used on proteins, fruits and vegetables. She said soda and candy can be purchased from their own personal funds.

There was a spirited debate on KREM’s Facebook page about this Florida bill, but it does not look like it is coming to Washington very soon.

Editor's note: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated the Florida bill as law. The Florida bill has not yet passed and if it does, will not take effect until July of next year.

© 2017 KREM-TV


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