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Simultaneous Participation in CSFP and other Nutrition Assistance Programs administered by FNS

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PDF Icon Policy Memo (102.01 KB)
DATE: October 5, 2009
POLICY MEMO: FD-096: Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP)
SUBJECT: Simultaneous Participation in CSFP and other Nutrition Assistance Programs administered by the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS)

Per CSFP regulations at 7 CFR 247.19, participants are prohibited from receiving CSFP benefits and Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC Program) benefits at the same time. However, there is no prohibition against simultaneous participation in CSFP and other FNS programs including but not limited to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), The Emergency Food Assistance Program, and the Senior Farmers' Market Nutrition Program, provided the eligibility requirements for these programs are met.

Per 7 CFR 247.9(b)(l), women, infants, and children who are certified as eligible to receive SNAP benefits automatically meet CSFP income eligibility requirements. Nevertheless, these applicants must still meet all other CSFP eligibility requirements, including categorical and residency requirements.

For senior applicants age 60 years and over, eligibility for SNAP benefits does not create automatic income eligibility for CSFP. Senior applicants must separately meet CSFP income eligibility requirements in order to participate in the program. It is important to note that, in accordance with section 8(b) of the Food and Nutrition Act of2008, which reads that SNAP benefits are "not considered income or resources for any purpose under any federal, state, or local laws," senior applicants who meet all other CSFP eligibility requirements cannot be denied CSFP benefits because they participate in SNAP.

Finally, 7 CFR 247.14(c) prohibits the value of benefits received under CSFP from being considered as income or resources when determining eligibility for other public assistance programs, including other FNS nutrition assistance programs.

Cathie McCullough
Food Distribution Division

Page updated: December 23, 2021

The contents of this guidance document do not have the force and effect of law and are not meant to bind the public in any way. This document is intended only to provide clarity to the public regarding existing requirements under the law or agency policies.