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USDA's National Household Food Acquisition and Purchase Survey (FoodAPS) is the first nationally representative survey of American households to collect unique and comprehensive data about household food purchases and acquisitions. Detailed information was collected about foods purchased or otherwise acquired for consumption at home and away from home, including foods acquired through food and nutrition assistance programs. The survey includes nationally representative data from 4,826 households, including Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) households, low-income households not participating in SNAP, and higher income households.

FoodAPS provides information about household size and composition, available resources (including food and nutrition assistance program benefits, if any), and acquired food items (and their prices). This information, combined with data about the food items and prices that are accessible to each household, provides a robust dataset for research studies that support the design and implementation of policies and regulations affecting America’s food and nutrition assistance programs. For a more detailed description of the survey, see Background.

ERS and the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) of USDA jointly sponsored FoodAPS. Mathematica Policy Research, a private research firm with experience conducting large-scale data collections, designed and implemented the survey. The Main Variable List contains the variables included in the data files posted to date. These include the household-level and individual-level interview files, the household weights, the food-at-home (FAH) and food-away-from-home (FAFH) event files, the FAH item files, data from the Meals and Snacks form, a summary of the individual daily reporting status, and each household’s access to FAFH outlets and SNAP-authorized FAH retailers (see below). A User's Guide, providing an overview of the survey and data sets as well as general notes about using the data, is also available in the NORC Data Enclave.

Please scroll down the page to find FoodAPS survey instruments, variable lists, forms, and other materials:

Data Set   
DownloadsLast UpdatedNext Update
Variable List and CodebooksBack to top
Main Variable ListDownload as Excel10/29/2015
User's Guide to Survey Design, Data Collection, and DatasetsDownload as PDF10/29/2015
Household Level CodebookDownload as PDF2/25/2015
Individual Level CodebookDownload as PDF2/25/2015
Household screening toolsBack to top
Household screener 1Download as PDF9/5/2013
Household screener 2Download as PDF9/5/2013
Participation followup letterDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Household food booksBack to top
Adult food bookDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Primary respondent bookDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Youth food bookDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Call in scheduleDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Telephone interviewDownload as PDF9/5/2013
In-person interviewsBack to top
Initial visit scriptDownload as PDF1/15/2014
Initial interviewDownload as PDF5/28/2014
Income worksheetDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Final interviewDownload as PDF12/11/2013
Respondent feedback formBack to top
Respondent feedback formDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Meals and snacks formBack to top
Meals and snacks formDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Survey confidentiality formsBack to top
Confidentiality formDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Confidentiality agreementDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Participant consent formDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Privacy pledgeDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Geographic componentBack to top
Retail Environment Study codebookBack to top
Retail Environment Study codebookDownload as PDFDownload file7/22/2014
Variable List-GCBack to top
Variable List-GCDownload as PDFDownload file7/22/2014
Training manualsBack to top
Telephone interviewer manualDownload as PDF4/14/2014
Field interviewer manualDownload as PDF4/14/2014
General informationBack to top
Informational brochureDownload as PDF9/5/2013
Informational postcardDownload as PDF9/5/2013

Last updated: Thursday, October 29, 2015

For more information contact: Elina Tselepidakis and John A. Kirlin