The Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) provides seniors with healthy foods through monthly senior food boxes. Find senior food boxes and other senior food programs in your community.
Facts about CSFP
- 5.2 million seniors face hunger in America
- CSFP serves 619,000 seniors with incomes at or below 130% of the Federal Poverty Line (approximately $15,301 for a senior living alone)
- CSFP helps vulnerable seniors choose between food and other basic needs
- The Feeding America network serves more than half a million seniors (age 60 and older) through the CSFP program
- More than half of Feeding America network food banks participate in CSFP, the most extensive hunger-relief program for seniors in the network
CSFP and Senior Health
For participating seniors, CSFP offers more than just food and nourishment. It also helps combat the poor health conditions often found in seniors who experience food insecurity. CSFP food packages are specifically designed to supplement nutrients typically lacking in participants’ diets. These healthy foods help seniors avoid costly hospitalizations and nursing home placements.
USDA Commodities and CSFP
CSFP is a discretionary program funded each year through the federal appropriations process. For this reason, the program is only able to serve as many eligible participants as funding allows.
CSFP provides USDA commodities and administrative funds to States, storing and transporting the food to local agencies for distribution to low-income clients. CSFP is the only USDA nutrition program that provides monthly food assistance specially targeted at low-income seniors. The $27 cost to USDA of providing commodities results in a monthly food package with an average retail value of $50.
Most participants pick up their monthly CSFP food package at a food bank or other local sponsor. Participants also can have an authorized designee pick up their food package. Some communities deliver the food package directly to the participant’s home, a critical program feature for seniors with limited mobility.