Sunday, May 26, 2013

Soft drinks and Federal Food Assistance ("Food Stamps"). See here why Coca Cola is so interested in this relationship...

Just doing some reading and came across an article on Coca-Cola's lobbying effort to make sure soft drinks are not excluded from purchase under the SNAP program (formerly known as "food stamps).  SNAP stands for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. 

I wondered why they would be so interested.

The lobbying group Science in the Public Interest estimates that $4 Billion of the $80 Billion allocated to the SNAP program (that's 5%)  is spent on carbonated soft drinks by recipients. This total does NOT include non-carbonated drinks like Monsters, Gatorade, etc, so the total on high sugar content drinks is likely significantly higher.

I was curious about how much this $4 Billion in transfer payments was as a percent of total soft drink sales.

In 2012 total soft drink sales were about $60 Billion, however that includes all outlets where soft drinks can be purchased such as restaurants, vending machines, sporting venues, grocery and convenience stores.

SNAP benefits cannot be used at all these locations. They can only be used at grocery and convenience stores primarily.  According to a WSJ article total sales in grocery stores and convenience stores are about $28.7 Billion of the $60 Billion.

$4 Billion as a percent of $28.7 Billion is 14% of total soft drink sales that are derived from the SNAP program.

NOW I know why they are so interested---that is substantial for the industry...and Coke.

Let the special interest money flow...
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