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NEW YORK -- The use of food stamps by U.S. households hit 14.9 million in 2011. That figure represents an increase from 13.6 million households receiving food stamps in 2010, according to the U.S. Census.
As CNNMoney reported, 47 states and Washington, D.C., saw an increase in their residents getting nutrition assistance, with the District of Columbia, Alabama and Hawaii seeing the largest jump. No state experienced a statistically significant decrease. In addition, Oregon had the highest share of households receiving food stamps at 18.9 percent. Wyoming had the lowest at 5.9 percent, the news outlet reported.
The federal food stamp program launched as the Food Stamp Act of 1977. It was renamed the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) in 2008. A record number of U.S. residents signed up for the program when the recession hit.
An alternate measure of food stamps shows that though the economy is improving, more people are signing up, CNNMoney reported. A record 47.1 million people received food stamps this past August, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.