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Promoting Nutrition Equity through SNAP Healthy Incentives

Promoting Nutrition Equity Through SNAP Healthy Incentives

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What are SNAP Healthy Incentives?

U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) healthy incentives are a key way to empower all consumers to make and have access to healthy choices—one of the five pillars of the White House National Strategy on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health. MyPlate National Strategic Partners (Partners) can put real change into motion by helping bring SNAP healthy incentives to historically underserved communities. 

Through incentive programs, Partners can increase the purchasing power of SNAP participants by providing coupons, discounts, gift cards, bonus food items, or extra funds for the purchase of additional eligible foods when households use SNAP benefits to purchase healthy incentive foods. Research shows that incentive programs are an effective way to promote healthy eating and improve nutrition security for more Americans. 

Benefits of Partner Participation in SNAP Healthy Incentives 

By supporting SNAP Healthy Incentives, Partners: 

  • Inspire all consumers to make and have access to healthy choices, one of the five pillars of the White House National Strategy on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health.
  • Encourage and empower Americans to eat healthful foods that can reduce diet-related chronic diseases and disparities by increasing access to healthy foods.
  • Strengthen their commitment to nutrition security and equity.
  • Increase community engagement as an active partner in the very communities they serve. 

How to Start a SNAP Healthy Incentive Program


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Apply to Offer Incentives

Apply through the SNAP Retailer Incentive Waiver Request Form.

  • Incentives can be for fruits and vegetables (and legumes), whole grains, and/or dairy foods that meet the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. See the eligible incentive foods list under “What foods can be incentivized?” on the SNAP Healthy Incentives webpage.
  • Your organization is responsible for obtaining the funds to pay for the incentives as well as any costs related to point-of-sale (POS) equipment or software upgrades.
    (Federal funding is only available through one of the Federal incentive grant projects. See “What types of SNAP incentive programs exist?” on the SNAP Healthy Incentives webpage for a list of current federal grants.)
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Complete the Form

Complete a MyPlate Partner Consumer Incentive Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)*. For more information, contact the MyPlate Partner program at SM.FN.NationalStrategicPartner@usda.gov.

*If pursuing an incentive waiver, be sure to provide this MOU to FNS when submitting your proposal package.

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Get Approvals

The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) approves incentive waiver requests within 45 days of receiving the complete proposal package. Please see the SNAP Healthy Incentives webpage for more information. If you have waiver-specific questions, email FNS’ Incentives mailbox at SM.fn.IncentiveProgram@usda.gov. For all other questions, email FNS at SM.FN.NationalStrategicPartner@usda.gov.

Within 30 days of FNS’ waiver approval, the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion (CNPP) will review the Partner’s incentive program to ensure it also meets the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and MyPlate guidelines.

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Be Featured on the Shop Simple with MyPlate Tool

Once approved by the CNPP team, the Partner’s incentive information will be featured on the Rewards/Incentives screen in the Shop Simple with MyPlate tool.

Once approved, partners are responsible for:

  • Training staff and program partners; and
  • Promoting participation in your audience or consumer channels, tagging #MyPlate, #ShopSimplewithMyPlate.

MyPlate will celebrate Partners’ participation via MyPlate channels (e.g., MyPlate Partner Digest, emails, Shop Simple). 

What is Shop Simple with MyPlate? 

Shop Simple with MyPlate helps consumers find SNAP savings in their local markets and discover new ways to prepare budget-friendly food choices. The Shop Simple tool is easy for consumers to navigate; they can visit MyPlate.gov/ShopSimple to open the tool from any device: phone, computer, or tablet. While using the tool they can: 

  1. Find local SNAP savings by zip code. 
  2. Go to “Rewards” to find SNAP and MyPlate Partners’ incentives. This is where MyPlate Partners will be featured, once approved. 
  3. Discover budget-friendly food tips, filtered by MyPlate food groups. 
  4. Access simple, delicious, nutritious recipes that stretch the food dollar.

To date, Shop Simple with MyPlate has had over 1 million views. 

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Shop Simple with MyPlate

Find savings in your area and discover new ways to prepare budget-friendly foods.

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MyPlate on Alexa

Get MyPlate nutrition tips on Amazon Alexa devices or the free Alexa app.

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Start Simple with MyPlate App

Build healthy eating habits one goal at a time! Download the Start Simple with MyPlate app today.

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MyPlate.gov is based on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2020-2025