Dear Colleagues --
I forward an encouraging memo from Peter and Trish (UNPA Senior Political Consultants) with respect to an amendment offered by Rep. Mike Rogers to the farm bill that would allow multivitamin products to be covered under the SNAP program.
This is encouraging news, but as you all know, final agreement and passage is a treacherous path. We will keep you posted.
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Patricia Knight <PKnight@knight-cap.us>
Date: Wed, May 16, 2018 at 7:13 PM
Subject: Farm Bill (HR2) -- Multivitamins under SNAP program
We have some good news to report. Tonight the House of Representatives accepted by voice vote an amendment offered by Rep. Mike Rogers to the farm bill (HR 2) that would allow multivitamin products to be covered under the SNAP program- previously known as “food stamps”. There is a long history of efforts to achieve this goal- starting almost two decades ago by Senators Harkin and Hatch, but tonight’s action encourages us that the provision could finally be signed into law.
The SNAP provision is cosponsored by Reps. Kyrsten Sinema, Mia Love and Tony Cardenas. It is also supported by a number broad health groups including the National Osteoporosis Foundation and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. A similar version passed the Senate in 2002 and 2008, but this is the first time ever that it has been approved by the House.
Specifically, the provision covers multivitamin-mineral dietary supplements for home consumption that provide at least half of the vitamins and minerals for which the National Academy of Medicine establishes dietary reference intakes, at 50 percent or more of the daily value for the intended life stage per daily serving as determined by the Food and Drug Administration. Further, the products cannot exceed the tolerable upper intake levels for those nutrients for which an established tolerable upper intake level is determined by the National Academy of Medicine.
Let us hasten to note that this year’s farm bill (it is reauthorized every five years) has become controversial in the House because it reflects the Administration’s efforts to impose work requirements on recipients. So that hurdle will have to be overcome before a bill can be enacted.
In the Senate, Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts (R-KA) has said his Committee’s bill will be unveiled “in the next few weeks” and we have been working with industry partners to encourage the Committee to include the vitamin coverage proposal.
We will continue to keep you posted.
- Peter and Trisha