(The Center Square) – Louisiana residents who received assistance from the Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) numbered 42,968 in 2020, a 15.9% decrease compared with the number of participants in 2019, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
The number of CSFP participants in Louisiana in fiscal year 2019 numbered 51,098, the USDA reported in its release of preliminary CSFP data for fiscal year 2020.
Nationwide, the number of CSFP participants declined 1.4% from fiscal year 2019 to fiscal 2020, according to the USDA. The 2019 participants numbered 702,565, dropping to 692,467 in 2020.
The CSFP aims to supplement the diets of low-income seniors aged 60 or above with USDA foods. But the program also has child participants grandfathered into it, since children receiving CSFP benefits as of February 2014 can continue receiving the nutritional aid as long as they are eligible under program rules in place in February 2014, according to the USDA.
CSFP food funds and food packages, which are provided to participating states and Native American tribal organizations, do not provide complete nutrition but do offer nutrients that tend to be lacking in the diets of the target populations, the USDA reports. On average, nearly 676,000 participants received such benefits every month during fiscal-year 2018, the agency said.