The Thrifty Food Plan

I am currently taking an advanced community nutrition graduate course at Texas State University and was assigned to do a presentation with a partner on The Thrifty Food Plan. So for the past few weeks, my partner, Kelly and I have been doing extensive research on this topic. For those of you who do not know what the Thrifty Food Plan is, you can click here to learn a little more about it.

In short, the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as the Food Stamp Program, gives income-eligible individuals and families a means through which to purchase approved foods at authorized food stores. These benefit levels are based on the USDA’s Thrifty Food Plan (TFP).

The TFP is supposed to consist of low-cost foods that meet the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. It is intended to fit into the low-income population’s regular menu, as much as possible. The MyPyramid Food Guidance System was used to develop the TFP. The USDA has since replaced MyPyramid with MyPlate.

Below you will find a podcast, blog links, and YouTube videos with people providing their opinions and experiences on the Thrifty Food Plan.

*Dr. Biediger-Friedman’s students: Once you are done viewing all of the information below (the podcast, blog links, and YouTube videos), please see the facilitated discussion at the bottom of this blog post! It requires posting a comment on this blog! *

NPR Podcast about the Thrifty Food Plan

Here’s an NPR podcast that talks about the Thrifty Food Plan in addition to food insecurity, hunger, and children’s health.

All Things Considered

Thrifty Food Plan Experiences from the Public

Here are a list of links to personal blogs that provide their opinions and experiences on the Thrifty Food Plan.

Blog Post Experiences

Living the Low Income Life Blog (2009)

Half Changed World Blog (2005)

Opinions and Information on the Thrifty Food Plan from the Public

Poverty and Policy Blog

Get Rich Slowly Blog (2007)

Food Thought Blog (2012)

Thrifty Food Plan Experiences Documented on YouTube Video 

A family of three followed the Thrifty Food Plan for one week and documented their meals and experiences each day.


Day One

Day Two

Day Three

Day Four

Day Five

Day Six

Day Seven

Dr. Biediger-Friedman’s Student’s Facilitated Discussion

After reading and viewing all of the provided information on the Thrifty Food Plan, do you believe the Thrifty Food Plan is a realistic/helpful tool for low income individuals or families to use? If so, how would you, as a nutrition professional, use the Thrifty Food Plan to help your clients and/or patients to stay within their budget means? If not, why not?

Please post your answers to this blog and provide at least your first name. This will be your facilitated discussion submission!