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The National Food for Work Programme was launched by minister of rural development,central government on 14 November 2004 in 150 of the most backward districts of India with the objective of generating supplementary wage employment. The programme is open for all Indian poors who are prepared to do manual unskilled labour work and are in the need of wage employment. It is implemented as a centrally-sponsored scheme. Food grains are provided to the States[clarification needed] free of cost.The transportation cost, handling charges, and taxes on food grains will, however, be the responsibility of the States.

The collector is the primary officer at the district level and has overall responsibility for planning, implementation, coordination, monitoring and supervision. For 2004-2005, ₹2020 crore (US$300 million) have been allocated for the programme in addition to 18 million tonnes of food grains.

Now that the NREGA is in force, the NFFWP will be subsumed within this programme
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