What is CSFP

The Commodity Supplemental Food Program

CSFP support staff and volunteers distribute a nutritionally designed monthly food package which aids low-income individuals known to be vulnerable to malnutrition during critical period, to those 60 years of age or older.

The nutrient-rich foods contained in the CSFP monthly food package help to prevent the occurrence of health problems, and improve the health status of these individuals who may be at a critical level of nutritional risk due to low-income and poor diet. The food packages consist of canned items (fruit, vegetables, meat or fish), bottled juice, shelf stable and instant dry milk, cheese, pasta or rice, dry beans or peanut butter and cereal.

The Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) reaches seniors in their homes and gathering places; with dignity and uncomplicated paperwork, and a specific food package designed to supplement their diet and help them stretch their food dollars.

Who Qualifies?

CSFP participants are senior citizens 60 years of age or older who fall at/or below 130% of the Federal Poverty Income Guideline.  To learn more about program eligibility and where to find a CSFP program in your state go to: https://www.fns.usda.gov/csfp/commodity-supplemental-food-program-csfp

Program Facts

  • CSFP is our nation’s first food assistance effort with a monthly food package using USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) commodity foods to supplement insufficient diets by providing protein, calcium, iron, and vitamins A and C.
  • CSFP was created by Congress to address hunger in specific population groups in a way that mutually promotes agriculture policy and alleviates hunger through the use of food commodities acquired under government farm supports.
  • CSFP is an important outlet for the food commodities supported under various farm programs.  The Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) is a unique federal/state and public/private effort.  The USDA uses its “buying power” to purchase specific nutrient-rich foods at wholesale prices for distribution to program participants.
  • State agencies such as the Departments of Health, Agriculture, or Education provide administration and over-sight of the program, contracting with community and faith-based organizations to warehouse and distribute food, certify eligibility, and educate program participants.  This unique collaboration also reaches homebound seniors with vital nutrition.
  • CSFP promotes volunteerism utilizing approximately three million volunteer hours, hundreds of nonprofit and faith-based organizations, and locally raised resources.

For more information from FNS: https://www.fns.usda.gov/csfp/commodity-supplemental-food-program-csfp

CSFP Participation and Food Cost Data:

The USDA food package average cost is approximately $20 per package.  The retail value of each package is approximately $50.

See the USDA website for the most recent USDA participation data available by State.