Commodity Corner

Get the Most Out of Your Products

By Grace Siggers

Per the USDA's official site, "The Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) works to improve the health of low-income elderly persons at least 60 years of age by supplementing their diets with nutritious USDA foods."

It has been said that everything we eat or drink matters. In the nutrition lessons that are demonstrated using MyPlate, this is a quote well used. Aging is something to be considered when we make food choices. How we eat and what we eat as we age can make a difference in our health as well as how we feel.

Healthy foods and beverages can increase our energy levels, improve digestion, and help prevent chronic disease. The CSFP provides a monthly food package tailored for older adults age 60 or above that can help stretch your food dollars and add nutritious foods to your diet for good health.

In Louisiana's East and West Carroll parishes, the nutrition educator and SNAP-Ed supervisor provide programs to commodity food distribution sites. These programs help the elderly stretch their food dollars by conducting food demonstrations and using our program's Nutritionally Yours fact sheets to help them better use their commodity food. After the demonstration and taste testing, fact sheets and recipes are given to take home for better use of their distributed commodity foods. Some of the sites visited are the Comfort Corner, Foot Prints, and Community Action.

When illustrating food demonstration, it is explained to participants that everything they eat or drink matters. We encourage them to eat better to live a healthier life. In changing their eating habits, we emphasize to them that if they have special dietary needs, check with their doctor or registered dietitian about how these foods can fit into their healthy eating pattern.

Program Facts

  • CSFP is our nation's first food assistance effort with a monthly food package using USDA commodity foods to supplement insufficient diets by providing protein, calcium, iron, and vitamins A and C.
  • CSFP was created by Congress to address hunger in specific population groups in a way that mutually promotes agriculture policy and alleviates hunger through the use of food commodities acquired under government farm supports.
  • CSFP is an important outlet for the food commodities supported under various farm programs. It is a unique federal/state and public/private effort. The USDA uses its "buying power" to purchase specific nutrient-rich foods at wholesale prices for distribution to program participants.
3/17/2021 2:57:03 PM
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