West Virginia

Department of
Health & Human Resources

USDA Announces Final WIC Food Package Rule

5/30/2014

 

Rule expands access to fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy


CHARLESTON, W.Va. The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources Office of Nutrition Services today announced the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has finalized changes to the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) which expands access to fruits and vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy. 

 

“The updated guidelines provide a $2 increase in the monthly amount for children’s fruits and vegetable purchases, from $6 to $8 per month,” said Dr. Letitia Tierney, State Health Officer and Commissioner for the Bureau for Public Health.  “The changes expand whole grain options available to participants beginning this fall, and will allow states more flexibility in meeting the nutritional and cultural needs of WIC participants.” 

 

The updated USDA food package makes science-based decisions in determining what food items should be in the WIC food package.  The revisions reflect public comments submitted in response to the first major food package changes in more than 30 years.  Updated regulations governing WIC foods also aligns them more closely with updated nutrition science, recommendations of the National Academies’ Institute of Medicine, and the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, as well as infant feeding guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics.

 

WIC provides pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women, infants and children up to age five with nutritious, supplemental foods.  The program also provides nutrition and breastfeeding education and referral to health and social services. 

 

More than 45,000 West Virginians receive WIC benefits each month.  Recent research by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has identified changes to the WIC food packages as a contributing factor in the decline in obesity rates among low-income preschoolers.


Contact Information

To learn more about WIC services or how to apply for benefits, call 304-558-0030, or your local WIC office. More information is available online at http://ons.wvdhhr.org/

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