Resource | Research | Assessing/Improving Operations
WIC Food Package Cost Report, FY 2010

The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) distributes Federal grants to State agencies for providing supplemental foods, nutrition education including breastfeeding promotion and support, and health care and social service referrals to nutritionally at-risk, low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, and nonbreastfeeding postpartum women, infants, and children up to age 5. The Federal costs of WIC in Fiscal Year (FY) 2010 totaled $6.7 billion, $4.6 billion of which were food costs. Food costs averaged $41.44 per month per participant. This report estimates the average monthly food costs for each of 5 WIC participant subgroups and estimates total dollars spent on 17 major categories of WIC-eligible foods in FY 2010. The participant and food level costs in this report are USDA’s first estimates since implementation of the 2009 WIC food package changes.

Resource | Research | Breastfeeding
Evaluation of the Birth Month Breastfeeding Changes to the WIC Food Packages

The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) has been providing nutritious foods, nutrition education, breastfeeding support, and health referral services to low-income mothers and their children for over 30 years. In 2006 the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) asked the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to review the WIC food packages. The IOM proposed major changes to improve nutrition and encourage breastfeeding but also expressed the concern that changes related to partial breastfeeding may have unintended consequences. The IOM recommended that FNS conduct an impact study evaluating the birth month breastfeeding changes to the WIC food packages. This study responds to that recommendation.

Resource | Research | Food/Nutrient Analysis
WIC Food Packages Policy Options

The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provides supplemental foods to over 9 million participants. The WIC food packages provide supplemental foods designed to meet the special nutritional needs of low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, non-breastfeeding postpartum women, infants and children up to five years of age who are at nutritional risk. This study describes some of the choices State agencies made as they exercised the flexibility offered during the implementation and describes the resulting food packages.

Resource | Research | Food/Nutrient Analysis
Analysis of WIC Food Package Prescriptions,1998-2002

The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) assists low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women, infants, and children by providing nutrition education, health and social service referrals, and supplemental foods. Specific WIC foods and maximum quantities are defined by Federal regulations. However, State and local WIC agencies have flexibility to tailor food package prescriptions to address participants’ individual needs and preferences. The purpose of this report is to illustrate the types and amounts of foods being prescribed within the WIC Food Package for each category of participants. This report does not provide information on redemption of the food prescriptions, or on actual food consumption; at this time, comprehensive data are available only on food prescriptions.

Resource | Research | Breastfeeding
WIC Infant Feeding Practices Study

This publication is based on the WIC Infant Feeding Practices Study (WIC-IFPS) sponsored by the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) of the United States Department of Agriculture. The WIC-IFPS is a one-year longitudinal study, which describes the infant feeding practices over the first year of life among a nationally representative sample of approximately 900 mothers who participated in WIC while they were pregnant.