Government Cheese for Wealthy Moms

A worker prepares boxes of free food for distribution in Chelsea, Mass., July 9.


brian snyder/Reuters

President Ronald Reagan famously distributed 60 million pounds of surplus cheese to poor Americans in 1981. Four decades later, middle-class moms are taking advantage of a welfare loophole to get their own government cheese.

In August, the U.S. Department of Agriculture began allowing schools to distribute food without verifying that a recipient has a child enrolled in public school or eligible for free or subsidized meals. That means anyone can roll up to a food-distribution site to get a free bag of food.



a mom in the wealthy Virginia suburb of Washington where I live recently posted pictures of an elegant cheese board she’d created with items she snagged from the city’s food giveaway. She could afford to buy the cheese, dried and fresh fruits, vegetables, whole-grain muffins, breakfast bars,

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