Food retailers trying to keep food stamp data from newspaper
An industry group that represents food retailers made a last-minute plea to the U.S. Supreme Court to stop data on where food stamp money is spent from being made public.
Jonathan Ellis of the Sioux Falls Argus Leader in South Dakota reported, “The appeal to the Supreme Court sought to bar the release of the data to the Argus Leader. The paper sued the United States Department of Agriculture, which administers SNAP, in 2011 after the government refused to turn over the sales figures under a Freedom of Information Act request.
“In January 2017, USDA abandoned the case after losing a bench trial in U.S. Federal District Court in South Dakota. FMI intervened in the case, and appealed to the 8th Circuit. In May, the 8th Circuit ruled that release of the annual sales figures would not cause competitive harm to the retailers who voluntarily participate in a program financed by taxpayers.
“Last year, taxpayers paid $68 billion to finance SNAP, formerly known as food stamps. The program is the primary food safety net for the nation’s poor, including children and the elderly.”
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