Arbor Update

Ann Arbor Area Community News

Michigan Food Stamp challenge: live on $3/day.

4. September 2007 • Murph
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Today was the first day of the Michigan Food Stamp Challenge for 50 area families voluntarily limiting their food budgets to $3/day per person – the amount provided by the food stamp program. The Challenge is intended to draw attention to the fact that even this low rate is threatened with cuts. From the Challenge’s press release,

“This week living on an average food stamp budget won’t come close to recreating the worry and anxiety that millions of low-income people feel every day when they’re not sure where their next meal is coming from, but we do hope to shine a light on the importance of the program and the need for increased benefits,” said Chuck Warpehoski, Director of the Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice, the organization organizing the Challenge. [Chuck is also an AU contributor.]
. . .
The Farm Bill, which includes funding for the Food Stamp Program, is due to be reauthorized in Congress this year.

“President Bush has called for cuts to food stamps, citing how the war in Iraq has put pressure on budget. Anyone who is considering cutting food stamps to pay for the war in Iraq should take the Food Stamp Challenge first, then let’s talk,” said Warpehoski.

The Challenge website hosts a blog for program participants to discuss the experience of shopping, cooking, and eating on $3/day, at

  1. Very interesting. And no doubt daunting to all whom attempt it.

       —Bioretention    Sep. 10 '07 - 11:28PM    #
  2. It’s been eye opening, that’s for sure. There were several things I anticipated: missing nutrition, feeling hungry, taking more time.

    I didn’t expect how stressed out it would leave me after shopping. I didn’t plan on starting to get sick and not being able to get some juice (or being so scared when I started reading labels and saw just how little vitamin C I’m getting).

       —Chuck Warpehoski    Sep. 11 '07 - 12:25AM    #
  3. Chuck – don’t worry, it’s only a week. Your scurvy won’t get bad enough for you to start losing teeth or anything…

    The blog has had some good conversations between the folks undertaking the challenge and people who have truly had to rely on food aid. Thanks for setting this up! (“this” being both the Challenge, and the blog.)

       —Murph.    Sep. 11 '07 - 05:46AM    #