- Department of Transitional Assistance
Media Contact for Price Chopper Joins Massachusetts’ SNAP Online Purchasing Program
Alana Davidson, Director of Communications
Boston — Today, the Baker-Polito Administration announced that Massachusetts residents who receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits can now use their EBT SNAP benefits to buy groceries online from participating Price Chopper stores for pickup and delivery via Instacart. Price Chopper is the fourth SNAP online retailer in the Commonwealth, joining Walmart, Amazon, and ALDI.
Massachusetts first launched the SNAP online purchasing program on May 29, 2020. To date, Massachusetts residents have spent over $51 million in SNAP benefits in online grocery purchases across retailers. Similar to using EBT SNAP benefits to purchase food in a store, benefits can be used to buy SNAP-eligible foods online, including fresh produce, frozen foods, dairy and eggs.
“SNAP online purchasing is one of several tools the Administration has employed, alongside the state’s national leadership in Pandemic EBT, to combat food insecurity for Massachusetts families and maximize federal nutrition programs,” said Secretary of Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders. “Helping thousands of families across the Commonwealth shop for healthy food in a safe way is important as we continue to navigate our way through the public health crisis and move towards a post-pandemic economy.”
“As a result of the economic fallout of COVID-19, the Commonwealth has seen a historic increase in SNAP participation, up nearly 100,000 households for a total of approximately 550,000 households receiving SNAP benefits. SNAP remains an important tool to help fight food insecurity by putting money directly into the hands of hundreds of thousands of households and supporting our local communities,” said Department of Transitional Assistance Commissioner Amy Kershaw. “Expanding approved online retailers promotes equity and safety for our residents receiving SNAP, allowing low-income households access to the same purchasing choices as other shoppers.”
Residents can shop from Price Chopper online via the Instacart online site and mobile app. Once an Instacart customer profile is created, customers can enter their EBT SNAP information as a form of payment in their profile. Customers can enter their zip code to determine if they are near a participating retailer and begin shopping and selecting items from retailers’ EBT-eligible products. Once items are added to their cart, customers will be able to select how much of their benefits they would like to allocate to the order. Orders for delivery and pickup can be placed by customers for receipt in as fast as an hour or scheduled several days in advance.
To help subsidize costs for EBT SNAP participants, Instacart will waive delivery or pickup fees through June 16, 2021, on up to the first three EBT SNAP orders for each customer with a valid EBT card associated with their Instacart account.
"Price Chopper/Market 32 is pleased to be amongst the first national grocery retailers equipped to accept EBT SNAP benefits as a form of payment online via Instacart for grocery delivery and curbside pickup," said Blaine Bringhurst, the progressive Northeastern chain’s EVP, Merchandising, Marketing and Store Operations. "We’ve advocated for this convenience since our partnership with Instacart began and are truly gratified that the success of its pilot program now allows us to extend the convenience to our customers throughout Massachusetts.”
“Expanding EBT SNAP payment integrations on Instacart is incredibly important to us. Food insecurity in Massachusetts has compounded over the past year, and we recognize the responsibility we have to increase access to same-day grocery delivery and pickup," said Chris Rogers, Vice President of Retail at Instacart. "We're proud to partner with Price Chopper/Market 32 to bring even more options to Massachusetts residents who rely on EBT SNAP."
SNAP benefits cannot be used to pay for fees, like delivery fees. Economic assistance programs benefits received through DTA, which include Transitional Aid to Families with Dependent Children (TAFDC), Emergency Aid to the Elderly, Disabled, and Children (EAEDC), and State Supplement Payments (SSP) cannot be used to purchase items online at this time.
In response to COVID-19, the USDA allowed states to submit plans to participate in an online purchasing pilot program. Massachusetts submitted a waiver to participate in the pilot program on April 24, 2020 and received federal approval on May 20, 2020. The USDA approves all retailers for participation in this program. Interested retailers can visit: www.FNS.USDA.gov/SNAP. For more information and outreach materials on the Massachusetts program, visit www.mass.gov/SNAPonline. To apply for SNAP benefits, visit www.DTAConnect.com.
DTA assists and empowers low-income individuals and families to meet their basic needs, improve their quality of life, and achieve long term economic self-sufficiency. DTA serves one in eight residents of the Commonwealth with direct economic assistance and food assistance, as well as workforce training opportunities.