New Feeding America Poll Shows Majority of Likely Voters Support Increasing Investment in Farm Bill Nutrition Programs

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For Immediate Release: 11/02/23
Contact: Wesley Story, 972.999.5225 

New Feeding America Poll Shows Majority of Likely Voters Support Increasing Investment in Farm Bill Nutrition Programs

Bipartisan majority support increasing SNAP benefits and 85% support increasing TEFAP funding.

TEXAS – A new poll released by Feeding America this week shows a majority of likely voters want the government to do more to address food insecurity. This survey data follows the release of a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) report that shows food insecurity increased significantly across the nation from 2021 to 2022. Texas has the second-highest rate of food insecurity at 15.5%.

The national polling data from Feeding America includes results from more than 1,200 likely voters, who made it clear that hunger and grocery prices are top-of-mind issues: 

  • 7 in 10 (69%) want the government to do more to address food insecurity. Only 22% feel the government is doing enough already.
  • 82% of likely voters say they are concerned about high food prices right now. 
  • 87% are concerned that hunger is on the rise in America.

“Texans and people across the nation continue to feel the strain of inflation and high food prices,” said Celia Cole, CEO of Feeding Texas, the state association of food banks. “People are being forced to make impossible decisions such as choosing between food or paying rent. Food banks cannot meet the growing need in our communities alone — we need action from the federal government.”

One way Congress can take action is through the Farm Bill, which is up for reauthorization this year. Some of the largest hunger-fighting tools in the nation, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), which provides commodities to food banks, are governed by the Farm Bill.

The poll results provide an understanding of what likely voters consider to be priorities for the 2023 Farm Bill. According to the poll, a vast majority support increased investment in TEFAP. 

  • 93% say TEFAP is an important program.  
  • 85% support increasing TEFAP funding in the Farm Bill.
  • 87% feel positively about the food assistance that comes from food banks.

“Congress has an opportunity to strengthen our nation’s commitment to hunger relief with the 2023 Farm Bill,” Cole said. “While SNAP is the backbone of hunger relief in our nation, TEFAP is the cornerstone of emergency food assistance, accounting for over 20% of the Feeding Texas network’s food supply. We urge elected officials to reauthorize a bipartisan Farm Bill package that strengthens SNAP and TEFAP while protecting investments already made in these critical hunger-fighting programs.”

The Feeding Texas network joins Feeding America in calling for Congress to double the base amount for mandatory TEFAP food purchases from $250 million to $500 million per year, adjusted annually for inflation. Food banks are struggling with a food supply crisis while seeing increased demand for emergency food assistance. Doubling investment in the TEFAP program would help food banks meet more of the need in their communities while also freeing up resources to respond to unforeseen disasters. 

In addition to supporting TEFAP, a majority of respondents expressed support for increasing SNAP benefit amounts and making it easier to access benefits. 

  • 80% agree it is possible to invest more in SNAP while also addressing other national priorities, like reducing the national debt. 
  • 79% agree Congress should make it easier to qualify for SNAP for people who are experiencing hard times. 
  • 73% agree we shouldn’t take away the autonomy of people using SNAP by putting more limits on what they can buy at the grocery store. 
  • Majorities of Democrats (90%), Independents (66%) and Republicans (61%) also agree that we should continue to increase SNAP benefit amounts to reflect current nutrition guidance and changing food costs.

“As we enter the season of giving, the best gift Congress can give Americans is peace of mind that they will be able to feed their families and hope for a brighter future,” Cole said. “This means as food insecurity increases across the nation, Congress should make it easier — not harder — to access SNAP benefits and emergency food assistance. Our neighbors facing hunger, and the food banks who proudly serve them, are counting on lawmakers to act.”


Feeding Texas is a network of 20 food banks and leads a unified effort for a hunger-free Texas. Learn more and find your local food bank at 

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