Food stamp recipients will receive their benefits for February early due to the government shutdown.

They are expected to be paid out Friday, Jan. 18 and available for use by the next day.

The United States Department of Agriculture has notified states that the benefits will be fully funded for the month of February, but they must be paid early instead of on their normal date.

Payments for March and beyond will be determined based on the availability of funding, which is affected by the shutdown.

1.8 million Pennsylvanians benefit from the national anti-hunger program known as the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP).