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Barriers that Constrain the Adequacy of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Allotments

Resource type
Research type
Benefit Content/Cost
Food Security
SNAP Benefit Use
Resource Materials
PDF Icon Summary (375.75 KB)
PDF Icon Survey Findings (2.89 MB)

This study identifies the barriers that SNAP participants face when trying to achieve a healthy diet through a nationally representative survey of SNAP participants.  The study identifies the individual, household, and environmental barriers faced by SNAP participants that prevent them from having access to a healthy diet throughout the month; describes the interaction between these barriers; describes the nature of the barriers and the coping strategies used; and identifies any associations with household food insecurity.

Key findings in this report include: 

  • 88 percent of SNAP participants reported facing some type of barrier to achieving a healthy diet throughout the month.
  • The most common barrier overall, reported by 61 percent of SNAP participants, was the affordability of foods that are part of a healthy diet. 
  • Two barriers – affordability and lack of cooking equipment or storage – were associated with household food insecurity. 
Updated: 06/23/2021