Alaska Food Assistance

Food Stamps | Food Banks | Food Pantries | Soup Kitchens | WIC

School Meals | Special Milk | Summer Food | Senior Nutrition


Food Stamp Benefits in Alaska

Alaska Food Stamp Program is the main Alaska food assistance resource for the low-income residents and households. The federally funded SNAP in Alaska is known as the Food Stamp Program.

It provides Food Stamp Benefits to eligible Alaska individuals and families in monthly dollar amounts via the Alaska Quest card. Recipients of the benefits can use them to buy food from SNAP authorized retail stores.

Alaska Division of Public Assistance manages the issuance of the food stamp benefits and provides administrative help through its district and field offices statewide.

Alaska Food Stamp Program is 100% funded by federal grants and is considered as a cornerstone in Alaska food assistance efforts to alleviate hunger.

There are special rules for Alaska that allow for higher Food Stamp benefits in rural areas. See monthly allotments table.

In addition, the food stamp beneficiaries in those areas are allowed to use their benefits when purchasing certain hunting and fishing supplies.

You must apply to find out if you qualify for food stamps in the State of Alaska. If approved, you will start getting food stamps a.k.a. food assistance benefits on a monthly basis.

The monthly Alaska Food Stamp benefits are called allotments and are deposited in dollars into the Alaska Quest card accounts of each beneficiary.

This is done each month on a certain date following the Benefits Issuance Schedule.

Food Stamp Benefits help needy Alaskans buy the food they need for good health.

Residents in need of food can find more Alaska food assistance in regional and local food banks, food pantries, and soup kitchens.

Helped by federal grants and local donations those facilities are providing food assistance to local Alaska residents in need to cope with hunger and food insecurity.

Find more on what kind of food you can buy using your Alaska Food Assistance benefits…

Food Stamp Program | Eligibility | Apply | Approval | Benefits


Food Banks in Alaska

Alaska food banks play an important role in the overall Alaska food assistance effort to end hunger and food insecurity throughout the State.

Their main objective is to collect food from various sources like wholesale organizations, grocery stores, and farms who have food in excess and are willing to donate.

Food banks then sort, store, and distribute donated food to local soup kitchens, shelters, and food pantries.

The Food Bank Association of Alaska is such non-profit organization that works to alleviate the hunger in Alaska.

Alaska Food Banks


Food Pantries in Alaska

Food pantries offer food directly to people that need it and who have means to cook it. They usually receive food from local food banks and in turn distribute it to low-income individuals and households at no cost.

Food pantries are typically located in facilities where received food can be stored and handled in a safe and sanitary manner.

Each food pantry serves a designated local area and most of them require prior registration and approval before food can be distributed to a particular individual or a family.

Alaska Food Pantries


Soup Kitchens in Alaska

Soup kitchens serve cooked meals on site to needy people at no cost. Like the food pantries, they normally receive their food from local food banks.

Soup kitchens take care mostly of homeless people and people who do not have the means to cook for themselves.

They require storage, cleaning, and cooking equipment as they have to do food preparation, serving, and the cleaning after the meals.

Food pantries are typically located in facilities where received food can be stored and handled in a safe and sanitary manner.

Each food pantry serves a designated local area and most of them require prior registration and approval before food can be served to a particular individual or a family.

Alaska Soup Kitchens


WIC Program in Alaska

Alaska Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provides healthy foods, breastfeeding support, nutrition education, health care referrals to Alaskans’ pregnant women, new mothers, infants and young children during times of important growth.

Alaska Women, Infants, and Children Program


School Meals in Alaska

Schools meals in Alaska are offered mainly through National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program.

The Alaska school meals programs  make nutritionally balanced, low-cost or free meals available to school children each school day in the year.

School meals nutritional standards are based on the recommendation from the Institute of Medicine and U.S. Government and teachers have reported that students perform better in class if they get regular meals.

Children getting school breakfast also had significantly reduced absence and tardiness rates, according to a Tufts University study.

Alaska School Lunch Program | Alaska School Breakfast Program


Special Milk Program in Alaska

Alaska Special Milk Program offers milk to children in schools, childcare institutions, and eligible camps. Any child in a school or institution that participates in the Special Milk Program can get milk.

Schools may elect to offer free milk to low-income children. In order to qualify for Alaska Special Milk, the child must be a resident of the State of Alaska.

Alaska Special Milk Program


Summer Food Program in Alaska

Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) is another Alaska food assistance program that provides free meals and snacks to help low-income Alaska children get nutritious meals in the summer time.

The SFSP is a federal program that provides grants to local sponsors who want to combine a food service with a summer activity program.

The funding provided by SFSP ensures that Alaska children in low-income areas continue to receive nutritious meals during long school vacations when they do not have access to school lunch or breakfast.

Alaska Summer Food Service Program


Senior Nutrition in Alaska

Alaska Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) provides low-income seniors with special checks to buy fresh, nutritious fruits, vegetables, and herbs from authorized farmers’ markets. To qualify for Alaska senior nutrition special checks, the applicants must be 60 years of age or older and their gross household income must not exceed certain limits.

An application must be completed for each person in the household that wants to apply for the SFMNP benefits.  Once approved, each beneficiary must reapply every year to continue participating in the Alaska Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program. Learn more about how senior nutrition program works.

Alaska Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program

Sources: State Agencies, FNS, USDA