Michigan plans to change when many food stamp users get their benefits as part of a way to help improve the availability of fresh food and keep grocers better stocked.
The state announced Thursday that instead of handing out food assistance in the early part of each month, food stamp users will get funds on different days throughout the month.
The change will be put into place gradually starting in January.
The current distribution method has led to heavier shopping days at the start of each month -- especially at inner-city grocers that serve many food stamp recipients.
Some merchants supported the change, saying it would allow them to keep stores better staffed and stocked at all times.