ARLINGTON, VA – December 2, 2010 – The Food Marketing Institute (FMI) issued the following statement from President and Chief Executive Officer Leslie G. Sarasin on today’s passage of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (S. 3307) by the U.S, House of Representatives:

     “We applaud the U.S. House of Representatives for approving The Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act as it contains important policy changes that lay the groundwork for the modernization of the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program, a long-standing initiative that helps provide healthy, nutritious foods to more than 9 million women and children every year.

FMI has long supported the transition of the WIC program away from paper coupons to one supported by electronic benefits transfer (EBT) technology as it will increase the efficiency of the program for both WIC-eligible mothers and grocers across the nation. Modernization of the WIC program allows participants greater purchasing flexibility, improves efficiency for retailers and moms, ensures our customers continue to have a pleasant experience in our grocery stores and reduces the stigma associated with presenting a paper coupon for payment.

We urge President Obama to sign this important legislation as soon as possible.”