SNAP Benefits for children, 2003-2021 in Maine

Change Indicator

Why This Indicator Matters

Supplement Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provides food to children who live in families with low incomes. The numbers fluctuate with the economy and also with changes in eligibility. Children who live in families who have sufficient food are said to have low food insecurity. This is associated with better outcomes in school and general health.

What the data shows
In December 2021, 50,410 Maine children ages 18 and younger received SNAP benefits compared to 53,963 in 2020 and 57,955 in 2019. So, despite the pandemic, the number of children with SNAP, decreased by over 7,500 children between December 2019 and December 2021. In December 2021, or 19.1% of Maine children received SNAP, the lowest since 2003.

In December 2021, the rate varied by county from a high of 29.9% in Piscataquis County, 28.2% in Somerset County and 28.1% in Oxford County to a low of 12.6% in Cumberland County, 12/7% in York County and 12.8% in Sagadahoc County.
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SNAP Benefits for children, 2003-2021

Data Provided By
Note: Non-consecutive years appear adjacent in the trend line
because one or more years have been deselected.

Definitions: The number/percent of children ages 0-18 who were receiving Supplement Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits during December. The state total includes children whose county is unknown or who reside out of state. The numerator is the number of children under age 19 who received SNAP in December and the denominator is the number of children ages 0-18 based on the most recent estimate from Maine's Office of Vital Statistics.

Data Source: Maine Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Family Independence.

Footnotes: Data for 2003 through 2021 represent enrollments in December of those years.

Updated: April 2022