BATON ROUGE – Louisiana participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (DSNAP) can use their benefits to purchase hot or prepared foods from authorized SNAP retailers in Louisiana throughout the month of October, following a waiver extension approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service (FNS).
FNS also approved the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services’ (DCFS) request to provide emergency supplements for SNAP recipients in October due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The emergency allotments, scheduled to be issued Oct. 16, will bring families not already receiving the maximum by household size to the max for the eighth consecutive month. Current SNAP recipients received their regular allotments for the month early – on Oct. 1.
FNS had previously approved a “hot foods” waiver through October 1. The extension, approved late Wednesday, will allow SNAP and DSNAP recipients to continue to use their benefits through October 31 to buy prepared foods at any Louisiana retailer that accepts SNAP EBT cards. Restaurant purchases are not allowed.
Normally, SNAP benefits cannot be used to purchase “hot food products prepared for immediate consumption.” Waiving that restriction is vital in the immediate aftermath of a storm such as Hurricane Laura, where many residents are displaced and cannot access a kitchen to prepare their meals.
More information about the “hot foods” waiver can be found at www.dcfs.la.gov/hotfoods.