Retailers wanting to apply for a EBT can now apply by calling the 800 telephone number listed on this website. An account executive will assist you with the application and equipment process. Most retail and service businesses can now apply to accept EBT cash benefits at their location. Be advised, that you should always speak with an account executive to get started.
Businesses can be approved to accept EBT cash only benefits within two business days. This program Is available nationwide exclusively through Englobe Retail Merchant’s Program.
To quickly apply for service, call Tel. 1800-642-9632
Act of 2014 On February 7, 2014, Congress passed the Agricultural Act of 2014, P.L. 113-79, which reauthorizes the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (“SNAP”).
Below are the SNAP retailer provisions that are effective immediately.
SNAP benefits cannot be used to pay bottle/can deposits unless it is a State-required fee. SNAP benefits cannot be used to pay for a deposit fee unless it is a fee the State requires customers to pay to purchase food in a returnable container. Deposit fees added by manufacturers cannot be paid for with SNAP benefits, even if the fee is included in the shelf price of the product. Currently, only 10 States have some type of State deposit fee requirement. These States are: California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Iowa, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan, New York, Oregon, and Vermont.
SNAP retailers must pay for their own Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) equipment. Retailers will no longer be offered free EBT equipment, supplies and related services (“EBT equipment and services”) to participate in SNAP. Retailers that become SNAP-authorized after March 21, 2014, must pay for their own EBT equipment and services. Retailers authorized on or before March 21, 2014, and who have already been given free EBT equipment and services by the State may, continue to use the EBT equipment and services for free until September 21, 2014. Such SNAP-authorized retailers should arrange for lease or purchase of EBT equipment and services as soon as they can in order to ensure continued participation.
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
To be eligible as a store in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), your store(s) must sell food for home preparation and consumption and meet one of the criteria below:
(A) Offer for sale, on a continuous basis, at least three varieties of qualifying foods in each of the following four staple food groups, with perishable foods in at least two of the categories:
Continuous basis means that on any given day of operation, a store must offer for sale and normally display in a public area, qualifying staple food items, with no fewer than three different varieties of food items in each of the four staple food categories.
Perishable foods are items that are either frozen staple food items; or, fresh, un-refrigerated or refrigerated staple food items that will spoil or suffer significant deterioration in quality within 2 to 3 weeks.
Variety means different types of foods, such as apples, cabbage and squash in the fruit or vegetable category; or, milk, cheese and butter in the dairy category. The following does not meet the variety requirement: having different brands and sizes; having the same item but with varying ingredients (e.g., plain sausage and spicy sausage); or having the same item but offering different types of the item (e.g., Granny Smith and Red Delicious apples). Food items with multiple eligible ingredients (e.g., pizza, frozen dinners) will be counted only once as a staple food, in the category of the main ingredient.
Retail sales include all retail sales of the firm including food, non-food, gas and services (such as rental fees, games, dry cleaners, lottery). However, fees directly connected to the processing of staple foods such as raw meat, poultry, and fish may be calculated as staple food sales under Criterion B.
Staple foods do not include accessory foods such as coffee; tea; cocoa; soda; non-carbonated drinks such as sports drinks, punches, and flavored waters; candy; condiments; spices; hot foods; or, foods ready to go or made to take out, like prepared sandwiches or salads.
*NOTE: Ineligible firms include, but are not limited to, stores selling only accessory foods or ice cream, specialty doughnut shops, and restaurants (i.e. firms with more than 50 percent of their total gross retail sales in hot and/or cold prepared foods not intended for home preparation and consumption shall not qualify for participation as retail food stores under Criterion A or B). This includes firms that primarily sell prepared foods that are consumed on the premises or sold for carry out.
Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) now SNAP is growing at a tremendous rate. Government programs such as state issued food stamps, Women/ Infants/ Children (WIC) and Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF), issue benefits on an electronic card known as an EBT now SNAP card. The card issued is similar to a debit card, as the cardholder has a specific personal identification number (PIN) that must be used when accessing their funds. To process an EBT /SNAP card, the card is run through an electronic payment system that authorizes the transfer of the card holder’s Government benefits to the retailer for payment of products received.
In many states, EBT /SNAP cards are the primary source for government issued benefits, such as food stamps. In fact, more than 80 percent of food stamp benefits that are issued today are issued on EBT cards. Many experts predict that other benefits such as social security will also be issued on EBT cards in the future, which will require more merchants to accept the government issued card.
As EBT /SNAP becomes a more frequent form of payment, your business should be prepared. Enroll in EBT program and increase your customer base by accepting government issued benefit cards.
Applying to Become Authorized
Any retailer that would like to accept food stamp benefits (SNAP) must be licensed to participate in the Food Stamp Program. This page provides information for retailers who want to apply for a Food Stamp Program permit from the USDA, Food and Nutrition Service (FNS).
Each store location under your ownership must have a separate food stamp program permit; you must submit a separate application for each of the stores that you own. It is against the rules and regulations of the Food Stamp Program for you to accept or redeem any food stamp benefits until you are authorized to do so
How it Works at Point of Sale:
Authorization and Rejection:
If an Authorization is sent:
Note: SNAP formally EBT is administered by the USDA. FNS program.
This page is for retailers – owners and employees of retail food stores. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is administered by the USDA Food and Nutrition Service through its nationwide network of FNS field offices. Local FNS field offices are responsible for the licensing and monitoring of retail food stores participating in SNAP.
Any retailer that would like to accept SNAP food benefits (EBT) must be licensed to participate in SNAP. This section provides information for retailers who want to apply for a SNAP permit. Today, the only form of SNAP benefit issuance is the EBT card. EBT allows you, the retailer, to accept SNAP payment for food using the EBT card–a kind of debit card.
FNS has numerous materials designed to help you follow EBT/SNAP rules and regulations. Protect your business. Learn the proper way to handle SNAP transactions. The Retailer Training Guide will help you learn the Program rules and answer common questions about the Program. You can also find out what food items can be sold for SNAP benefits – and what things cannot be sold. We want you to be successful. Know and follow the laws and regulations, train your employees carefully, and monitor their performance –these are all ways in which you can help to ensure your success in SNAP.
The staff of your local USAD/FNS office is available to answer your questions and advise you on Program rules and procedures. If a situation arises that you are not sure how to handle, you should always contact the FNS field office that services your area for assistance or call Tel. 1800-642-9632 for information.
Remember, it is against the rules and regulations of SNAP for you to accept or redeem any SNAP benefits until you are authorized by USDA, FNS. Each store location under your ownership must have a separate SNAP permit; you must submit a separate application for each store that you own. If your store changes ownership, if you move, or if you close your store, your SNAP permit is void. You cannot transfer your permit to someone else.
To be eligible to accept SNAP FOOD benefits, a store must sell food for home preparation and consumption and meet at least one of the criteria below:
(A) Offer for sale at least three different varieties of food in each of the following four staple food groups, with perishable foods in at least two categories, on a daily basis:
(B)At least 50 percent of the total sales (e.g., food, non-food, services, etc.) at your store must be from the sale of eligible staple food.
foods that are fresh, refrigerated, or frozen. Packaged or canned goods are not considered perishable.
a basic dietary item (e.g., bread, flour, fruits, vegetables, beef, chicken, fish, etc.). Snack or accessory foods; such as chips, soda, coffee, condiments, and spices, are not staple foods. In addition, you may not count ready to eat, prepared foods as staple foods.
is defined as different types of food. For example, your store has a variety of dairy items if you sell milk, yogurt, and cheese on a daily basis. It would not have a variety of dairy items if you only sold three versions of milk (e.g., skim milk, evaporated milk, whole milk).
Households CAN use SNAP benifits to buy:
— breads and cereals;
— fruits and vegetables;
— meats, fish and poultry; and
— dairy products.
Households CANNOT use EBT/SNAP FOOD benefits to buy:
— pet foods;
— soaps, paper products; and
— household supplies.
“Junk Food” & Luxury Items
The Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 (the Act) defines eligible food as any food or food product for home consumption and also includes seeds and plants which produce food for consumption by SNAP households. The Act precludes the following items from being purchased with SNAP benifits: alcoholic beverages, tobacco products, hot food and any food sold for on-premises consumption. Nonfood items such as pet foods, soaps, paper products, medicines and vitamins, household supplies, grooming items, and cosmetics, also are ineligible for purchase with SNAP benifits.
When considering the eligibility of energy drinks, and other branded products, the primary determinant is the type of product label chosen by the manufacturer to conform to Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidelines:
Live animals may not be purchased with SNAP benefits.
Pumpkins, Holiday Gift Baskets, and Special Occasion Cakes
Pumpkins are edible and eligible for purchase with SNAP benefits. However, inedible gourds and pumpkins that are used solely for ornamental purposes are not eligible items.
Gift baskets that contain both food and non-food items, are not eligible for purchase with SNAP benifits if the value of the non-food items exceeds 50 percent of the purchase price.
Items such as birthday and other special occasion cakes are eligible for purchase with SNAP benefits as long as the value of non-edible decorations does not exceed 50 percent of the purchase price of the cake.
Retailers not meeting the EBT /SNAP food sales eligibility requirements, can accept EBT/SNAP cash purchase and cash back onlybenifits.Call Tel. 1800-642-9632For more information on how to apply.
Restaurants serving hot food can apply for EBT cash benefits acceptance. Call or email us for more information.