The cost of food stamps has increased in recent years as more people join the program, which will continue to expand through at least 2014, according to a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report released Thursday.

From 2007-2011 spending on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (the SNAP program, informally known as the food stamp program) increased 135 percent to reach a cost of $78 billion last year alone, the report reveals.

In the four year period CBO highlighted, the number of Americans on food stamps increased by 70 percent — “Nearly 45 million recipients, one out of every seven U.S. residents, received SNAP benefits in an average month in fiscal year 2011,” CBO explained.