SNAP Participation Takes Small Drop in January 2013. SNAP national participation in January 2013 decreased by 19,948 people over the month to 47,772,108 people—1.3 million persons higher than in January 2012. USDA Secretary Battles Attacks on SNAP/Food Stamps. Speaking at an event, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack said the SNAP/Food Stamp Program and other federal nutrition programs “are under attack in a very consistent, thoughtful campaign to delegitimize the programs.” Instead of reducing program funding, as Congress is proposing, Vilsack said that a better way to reduce participation in the program would be to get Americans help, training, and education so they would not need the assistance. “Make no mistake, this is a battle,” said Vilsack in his speech on hunger, obesity and food literacy, and he vowed to protect the federal nutrition programs. Food Research and Action Center’s Annual Benefit Dinner. Make plans now to attend the dinner on Wednesday, June 12, 2013, at the Capital Hilton in Washington, D.C. The proceeds from the dinner benefit FRAC’s Campaign to End Childhood Hunger, which is achieving major gains in feeding children in communities throughout the United States. For more information, call (202) 986-2200 x3950. To register online, please visit FRAC’s website.