Bill limiting food stamp use on junk food makes progress in Wis. - Bring Me The News

Bill limiting food stamp use on junk food makes progress in Wis.

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A bill that would limit the amount of junk food a person could buy with food stamps is making its way through the Wisconsin Legislature.

The state Assembly approved the measure 68-26 Tuesday.

The Associated Press reports the bill does not define the term "junk food," but would require people enrolled in Wisconsin's FoodShare program to spend at least two-thirds of their monthly benefits on designated items such as milk, bread and vegetables--foods state officials have defined as "healthy," according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

The remaining benefits could be spent on any authorized food.

Supporters say the requirement encourages food stamp recipients to make healthier choices, while opponents believe it will be difficult and costly to implement and limits choices for those without access to full-service grocery stores.

Food giant Kraft Food Group--whose holdings include Oscar Mayer Co. in Madison--PepsiCo Inc. and state associations representing food processors, convenience stores and retailers also oppose the measure.

Now, the bill goes to the Wisconsin Senate.

It's unlikely the federal government will be onboard. The U.S. Department of Agriculture largely funds the FoodShare program and has denied other state's attempts to impose similar restrictions, including Minnesota in 2004, according to KARE 11.

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