Friday, April 10, 2015
WIC helps and and also has unintended consequence
The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, which authorized funds for WIC, is set to expire on September 30, 2015. The reauthorization process gives policymakers an opportunity to reexamine the program’s operation and effectiveness and consider improvements. A comprehensive 2012 review of WIC research conducted for USDA concluded that WIC participation directly affects participants’ health and nutrition through improved diets (including increased iron density, fewer added sugars, and a greater variety of foods) and greater use of health care services. It also found that requirements that WIC-authorized stores stock at least two varieties of fruits, two varieties of vegetables, one whole-grain cereal, and lower fat milk improved availability of healthy foods in these stores increased access to healthy foods for the entire community, not just for WIC participants. But the study also found that WIC program regulations might have had the unintended effect of raising prices and limiting availability of non-WIC brands of infant formula in some retail food stores.
Source: USDA, 4/6/15, WIC Benefits