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Normally, federal regulations define eligible food purchases with SNAP or DSNAP benefits as "any food or food product intended for human consumption except alcoholic beverages, tobacco, and hot food products prepared for immediate consumption."
DCFS requested a waiver specific to the exception in the definition of eligible foods in order to allow the purchase of hot foods and hot food products with SNAP benefits for a limited time due to the impact of Hurricane Isaac.
The waiver was necessary to avoid undue hardship for Louisiana citizens affected by Hurricane Isaac because many residents have evacuated to other parts of the state and because continuing power outages prevent households from cooking.
Approximately 388,867 regular SNAP households and all households approved for DSNAP in the coming week would be eligible to purchase hot foods with their benefits under the waiver.
The waiver has been approved through September 30, 2012.
FNS also has sent a notice to retailers to inform them of the waiver of the hot foods exception.
SNAP and DSNAP are administered in Louisiana by DCFS and overseen by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service. USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. Read more about recipients' rights.