Cuts to the federal Supplemental Assistance Nutrition Program, better known as food stamps, will hit Friday, affecting about 220,000 beneficiaries in Southern Arizona.
More than 1.1 million Arizona residents receive SNAP benefits.
The federal assistance program got a boost in 2009 under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, but that increase is scheduled to end Nov. 1.
About 220,000 people in Southern Arizona receive SNAP benefits, said Marco Liu, the advocacy and outreach director for the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona.
"The reductions are going to mean that individuals who are participating in the program are going to have fewer resources with which to…feed their families." Liu said. "The cuts are going to be based on the size of a household. As an example, for a four person family it would be about a $36 to the maximum benefit.
Liu said the food bank serves about 62,000 meals a month in Pima, Cochise, Santa Cruz, Graham, and Greenlee counties.
He said since the start of the recession the food bank has seen an increase in demand for it’s services.