Workforce, Income, and Food Security

Food Assistance Programs & Nutrition

school lunch

The Food and Nutrition Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) administers major nutrition assistance programs that provide children and low-income families with better access to food. The Department also encourages healthy diets among program recipients through comprehensive nutrition education and promotion efforts.

Abt has decades of experience designing and executing complex research studies for USDA. Our work has spanned virtually every feeding and nutrition program implemented by the Food and Nutrition Service. It covers all aspects of program delivery and impact.

We improve the effectiveness of Food and Nutrition Service programs by:

  • Examining the implementation and impact of food assistance programs, including new features and initiatives designed to promote nutrition education and healthy eating.
  • Assessing patterns of benefit use and their impact on the food security of at-risk populations.
  • Assessing the nutritional status and dietary intake of infants, children, and adults.
  • Examining the impact of changes in program design and regulations on program costs, operations and integrity, caseload size and composition, and stakeholders.
  • Developing new metrics for assessing program performance.
  • Evaluating the implementation and impacts of electronic benefit transfer systems.
  • Collecting nationally representative data on program operations and participants to support program management and oversight.

Read more about our research and evaluation on food assistance and nutrition programs

Studies Unveil Ways to Reduce Hunger in U.S.
Learn More >
Explaining the Impact of USDA's Healthy Incentives Pilot on Different Spending Outcomes
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Options for SNAP Employment & Training Pilots
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