Only four states have seen a higher percentage of people leave the federal food stamps program over the past year than Mississippi. 

In May 2018, 498,490 Mississippians were on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP. By April of this year, that number had declined to 443,868 participants. This represents a drop of 11 percent over the last 11 months that data is available.  

These numbers coincide with recent job numbers that show more people in Mississippi are working. Over the past 12 months, Mississippi experienced a job growth rate of 1.7 percent, good enough for 17th nationally and fifth in the SEC footprint. 

The states that saw a larger percentage drop from the SNAP rolls were Georgia (-12.6 percent), New Hampshire (-12.4 percent), Wyoming (-11.4 percent), and Kentucky (-11.3 percent).

Nationally, SNAP participation has steadily declined since the recession and over the past year it dropped by another 6.5 percent representing a decrease of about 2.5 million people. 

The percent of Mississippians receiving food stamps dropped a full two percent over the last year. In May 2018, a little less than 17 percent of the state received food stamps. Today that number is just under 15 percent. 

Percent of residents using SNAP among neighboring states

StateSNAP percentage (2019)SNAP percentage (2018)
Alabama14.6%15.4%
Arkansas11.5%12%
Louisiana17%18.4%
Mississippi14.9%16.7%
Tennessee13.1%13.9%