Electronic cards to make WIC easier to use

(AP Graphics Bank)

WASHINGTON (AP) – Pregnant women and parents using the Women, Infants and Children program will have an easier time buying food at the grocery store.

The Agriculture Department is announcing Monday it will require states to transition from paper vouchers to electronic cards over the next five years. WIC will now use the same type of Electronic Benefits Transfer cards used by food stamp recipients.

Around half of the nation’s infants benefit from WIC. The program offers grants to states to give food vouchers to low-income pregnant women, women who have recently given birth and infants and children up to age 5 who are found to be at nutritional risk.

The programs covers only a handful of nutritional foods, such as whole grains, low-fat dairy and fruits and vegetables.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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