The number of people on food stamps jumped 14.7% from 2009 to an astounding 43,200,878 people. In one month participation increased 0.7%. There were 310,570,000 people in the United States in October. That is 13.9% of Americans on food stamps for October 2010! The average benefit is $133.79 per person.
The graph above shows the dramatic rise in food stamp usage. The graph was created from annualized historical food stamp data and normalized to the total United States population, including the armed forces overseas, annualized. The food stamp participants were also annualized by their yearly average.
The government now calls this program SNAP instead of food stamps.