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Weiner Proposes Food Stamp Incentive For Produce

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(Photo/Getty Images)

(Photo/Getty Images)

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NEW YORK (WCBS 880 / CBS 2) – With millions of adults considered overweight in the United States and obesity becoming a nationwide epidemic, Congressman Anthony Weiner may have a novel solution to get people to eat their veggies.

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Monica Miller reports

Weiner (D-Brooklyn, Queens) is proposing a bill that would give a 50 percent discount to food stamp recipients who buy fresh produce using their Electronic Benefits Transfer card.

Under the proposal, the food stamp program would pay the grocer the full amount, but recipients would have 50 percent of the cost deducted from their EBT card.

“The unfortunate fact of life is the cheapest foods on the shelves at supermarkets are those with lots of preservatives, lots of sugar and lots of salt,” Weiner told WCBS 880.

“We think this is a good way to incentivize good behavior and also to save tax payers a lot of money because obese citizens wind up costing the treasury an enormous amount,” Weiner said.

“This would not only help low income people that get these benefits to eat more produce — which would reduce the obesity, but it would also help supermarkets and bodegas because they would continue to get the same reimbursement for these products.”

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