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Easier curbside pickup with EBT cards coming soon


New grants to help retailers with mobile point-of-sale equipment

Minnesotans who receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits will soon find it easier to purchase groceries via curbside pickup or delivery.

The Minnesota Department of Human Services, in partnership with the Minnesota Grocers Association, will issue grants to eligible grocery stores for mobile equipment that can accept Electronic Benefit Transfer cards. Retailers can apply for this reimbursement grant Nov. 2 through Dec. 30, 2020.

Almost 2,300 retailers are eligible for these Grocery Store Point-of-sale Expansion Grants of up to $500 each in CARES Relief Fund money. The mobile equipment will offer an alternative to going into stores to make EBT purchases, enabling additional, socially distanced access points for SNAP recipients.

“Our mission at the Department of Human Services to help Minnesotans who need it has never been more important than during this time of crisis,” said Human Services Commissioner Jodi Harpstead. “This equipment will provide safer ways for SNAP recipients to purchase food. Ideally, by early next year, we will have thousands of retailers offering this convenient option for purchasing food throughout the state.”

Currently, SNAP recipients can either purchase food in grocery stores, or order and pay for food online with their EBT cards through Walmart and Amazon. Retailers who are interested in receiving approval for online purchasing, must contact the United States Department of Agriculture’s retail division.

“These grants are a timely opportunity to address the need for distance transactions as we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. This statewide program will give grocers the ability to serve our customers by offering SNAP transactions curbside and through delivery,” said Jamie Pfuhl, president of the Minnesota Grocers Association. “We are pleased to be a part of this solution-based partnership.”

Those eligible to apply are:

  • Minnesota retailers, with a physical store in Minnesota, that currently have an active account in good standing with the United States Department of Agriculture to receive and process SNAP purchases with an EBT card
  • Retailers who do not currently have a wireless point-of-sale machine or who purchased one after June 1, 2020.

To apply for reimbursement for mobile point-of-sale machines purchased June 1, 2020, through Dec. 30, 2020, retailers can access the application link at: https://form.jotform.com/202884695063161. All eligible retailers who apply by the deadline will receive grant reimbursement up to $500 for these purchases.

For more information and technical assistance, visit the Minnesota Grocers Association website at www.mngrocers.com or email kfrederick@mngrocers.com or call 651-228-0973.

For more information on food supports for Minnesotans during COVID-19, visit https://mn.gov/dhs/food-emergency/.

Last modified: 11/13/2020

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