Instacart, the leading online grocery platform in North America, today announced a major expansion of its Electronic Benefits Transfer and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (EBT SNAP) online payments integration in tandem with its one year anniversary of increasing access to food for people across the U.S. From free delivery and pickup for all EBT SNAP orders to an added convenience offering and new value retailers, Instacart is creating more ways for individuals to access fresh food and pantry staples through its online platform.
Instacart is the first and only platform to have pioneered the retailer onboarding process with the United States Department of Agriculture’s Food & Nutrition Service (USDA FNS), accelerating retailers’ abilities to certify for EBT SNAP online acceptance. As a result, more than half of all federally-approved retailers have received their EBT SNAP online certification for their stores on the Instacart platform. Additionally, Instacart now powers EBT SNAP online payments to reach more than 25 million people experiencing food insecurity across the U.S.
As Instacart continues to invest in creating greater access to food for more people, the company is introducing a number of new offerings and integrations to expand its EBT SNAP online payments footprint:
- Subsidizing Costs with Free Delivery and Pickup: Doubling down on its commitment to increasing access to food, Instacart is waiving the delivery and pickup fees on all EBT SNAP orders from Jan. 1, 2022 through March 31, 2022 for customers using a valid EBT card associated with their Instacart account in connection with their purchase. This new promotion follows Instacart’s offer of free delivery or pickup on the first three EBT SNAP customer orders for the past year.
- Convenience Delivery for EBT SNAP: In addition to partnering with traditional grocers, Instacart is now also enabling a number of its retailers to accept EBT SNAP payments through its virtual convenience offering. Whether fresh produce, pantry staples or last-minute dinner ingredients, convenience delivery offers customers an easier and faster way to shop from their favorite grocers in as fast as 30 minutes. EBT SNAP convenience delivery is available in partnership with Ahold Delhaize USA banners: Food Lion Now, GIANT Instant Delivery, Giant Food Convenience, Hannaford Now, MARTIN’s Instant Delivery and Stop & Shop Express — all of which can be found within the Convenience Hub on the Instacart marketplace.
- Expanding Availability with New Retailers: Since launching EBT SNAP payments in partnership with ALDI in November 2020, Instacart has expanded its EBT SNAP footprint to include more than 40 retailers across more than 5,600 stores in 39 states and Washington, DC. Over the last year, Instacart has continued to partner with an extensive roster of retailers that accept EBT SNAP, which now includes Ahold Delhaize USA, Brookshire’s, Earth Fare, Fairplay Foods, Food Bazaar, Harps Foods, Homeland, Little Giant Farmer’s Market, My County Market, PAQ, Inc. (Food 4 Less California and Rancho San Miguel), Price Chopper/Market 32, Publix, The Save Mart Companies, Schnucks, Strack & Van Til, Tops Markets, Wakefern Food Corp., Woodman’s Markets and more.
- Instacart Enterprise Integration: In addition to growing EBT SNAP across the marketplace, Instacart has enabled EBT SNAP payments across its enterprise solutions in partnership with BJ’s Wholesale Club, Brookshire’s, Food Bazaar, Food Lion, Harps Food Stores, Homeland, Publix, The Save Mart Companies, Schnucks, Strack & Van Til, Tops Markets and Wakefern Food Corp. By enabling the payments integration across retailers’ web and mobile platforms – including retailer-owned websites and apps – that are powered by Instacart’s enterprise technology, EBT SNAP customers now have even more options when accessing fresh food and pantry staples from grocers they know and trust.
“We believe grocery delivery and pickup shouldn’t be a luxury for some – they should be accessible to everyone,” said Fidji Simo, CEO of Instacart. “We’re proud of the progress we’ve made since launching EBT SNAP payments and are grateful to our retail and USDA FNS partners for helping us bridge the food accessibility gap for millions of Americans. Looking ahead, we’re committed to expanding our EBT SNAP offering and investing in additional programs that offer consumers more accessible, affordable and nutritious ways to feed their families.”
“We’re proud to have paved the way as the first grocery retailer to introduce EBT SNAP online payment with Instacart,” said Brent Laubaugh, Co-President at ALDI U.S. “We share in Instacart’s mission to increase food access for those who need it most. Offering the best possible prices on groceries is what we’re all about, you can see that in our low prices, every day. We look forward to continuing our partnership to help millions of families put food on the table across the country.”
“Feeding America supports programs that increase access to nutritious food for people across the country facing food insecurity,” said Lauren Biedron, Vice President of Corporate Partnerships at Feeding America. “We are proud to partner with Instacart, which is continuing to connect communities to food in meaningful ways.”
As the EBT SNAP online footprint continues to grow, Instacart recognizes the importance of understanding and meeting the needs of EBT SNAP beneficiaries. Looking at the last year, data shows that with stores that offer both delivery and pickup, EBT SNAP customers opt for delivery the majority of the time. As most EBT cards are reloaded at the beginning of each month, EBT SNAP orders on Instacart are most frequently placed within the first three weeks of the month. In terms of the most frequently shopped aisles, EBT SNAP beneficiaries turn to produce, frozen goods, dairy and eggs, beverages and meat and seafood most frequently.
Where available, EBT SNAP participants are able to shop from select retailers via the Instacart website and mobile app, as well as select retailers’ websites and apps. Once an Instacart customer profile is created, customers can enter their EBT food card information as a form of payment in their profile. Customers will need a secondary form of payment for non-food items such as taxes, tips and fees per federal SNAP guidelines. Customers can then 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 30 minutes or scheduled several days in advance. For more information about EBT SNAP on Instacart, click here.