Newly introduced bill will make dietary supplements eligible for purchase through SNAP benefits

June 6, 2019

Senators Tim Scott (R-SC) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), as well as Representatives Tony Cárdenas (D-CA) and Mike Rogers (R-AL) have introduced a bill called The SNAP Vitamin and Mineral Improvement Act of 2019. 

Senators Tim Scott (R-SC) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), as well as Representatives Tony Cárdenas (D-CA) and Mike Rogers (R-AL) have introduced a bill called The SNAP Vitamin and Mineral Improvement Act of 2019. If passed, the bill amends the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 to “amend the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 to make certain multivitamin-mineral dietary supplements eligible for purchase with supplemental nutrition assistance program benefits, and for other purposes.”

Industry has been lobbying for such a bill for some time, in an effort to bridge nutrient gaps in low-income populations through greater access to dietary supplements. “Americans are not getting enough nutrients from food alone, and a multivitamin, in combination with a balanced diet, can fill nutrient gaps,” said Mike Greene, senior vice president, government relations, for the Council for Responsible Nutrition, in a press release. “The facts have always been there, but the law has not. With today’s introduction of The SNAP Vitamin and Mineral Improvement Act, there is a glimmer of hope that we will be able to finally empower low-income consumers with a choice for better nutrition.”

The bill is supported by research underscoring that low-income Americans are more likely to have nutritionally inadequate diets, and that dietary supplements such as multi-vitamins are a safe and affordable way to get adequate levels of essential nutrients.