What is EFNEP?

by Jackie Hunter
Extension Faculty, Youth and Adult
Expanded Food & Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP)

EFNEP, the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program, is a federally funded educational program conducted through the Cooperative Extension Service in every state and U.S. territory. In Florida, EFNEP is administered through The University of Florida and Florida A & M University. For over 40 years, EFNEP has been helping limited resource youth and families with children learn how to eat healthier meals and snacks, stretch their food dollars and reduce the risk of food-borne illnesses. Additionally, in collaboration with many organizations through the Eat Smart and Being Active Curriculum, Florida EFNEP aims to reduce the rising tide of obesity by teaching youth and families practical skills resulting in changed behaviors that help them to eat smart, move more and achieve a healthy weight.

EFNEP’s Mission

The mission of EFNEP is to improve the health of limited resource youth and families with young children through practical lessons on: basic nutrition and healthy lifestyles, resource management and food safety. The program focuses on helping families and youth improve behaviors in the following areas: Dietary Intake as recommended by the Dietary Guidelines and MyPlate, Food Resource Management skills and practices, Nutrition Practices and Food Safety practices. Participants increase their ability to select and buy food that meets the nutritional needs of their families and gain new skills in food preparation, food storage, and food safety. They learn to better manage their food budgets.


EFNEP’s targeted audience is limited resource families with young children (under the age of 19) living in the household and who are eligible for public assistance. EFNEP serves individuals and families who are expecting a child (pregnant) or who provide non-custodial care for children on a regular basis (grandparent or non-custodial parent) as long as these individuals meet the income guidelines and are responsible for the planning, shopping, and preparing food for the children in their care. EFNEP also serves limited resource, school-age children.

The primary audiences for EFNEP are limited resource:

  • Pregnant women
  • Families with young children (under the age of 19) living in either rural or urban areas who are responsible for the planning, purchasing and preparing of the family’s food
  • Pregnant and Parenting Teens
  • School-age youth (5 – 19 years of age)

The assurance that all eligible persons shall bear equal access to the benefits of the program and facilities without regard to race, color, creed, national origin, religion, sex, age, or disability is an important objective of Cooperative Extension.

EFNEP makes a difference in health and saves money in Hillsborough County…

EFNEP’s Impact in Hillsborough County



Jackie Hunter
Extension Faculty, Youth, Adult, and 4H
Expanded Food & Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP)


Posted: November 13, 2017

Category: Food Safety, Health & Nutrition, Home Management, Relationships & Family, Work & Life
Tags: Efnep

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