Aldi and Instacart have expanded their integration of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) electronic benefit transfer (EBT) payments in online grocery orders to nearly 1,000 more of the deep discount grocer’s stores.
EBT SNAP online payment for Instacart delivery and pickup orders launched Thursday at Aldi stores across 23 states and Washington, D.C. The companies unveiled their SNAP EBT partnership in late October, rolling out the capability to more than 60 Aldi stores in Georgia in November and then to 570-plus Aldi stores in Illinois, California, Florida, Pennsylvania and Texas in early December.
“Aldi is proud to be the first grocery retailer to accept EBT SNAP benefits as a form of payment online via Instacart for grocery delivery and curbside pickup,” Scott Patton, vice president of national customer interaction services for Aldi U.S., said in a statement. “This service is now available at nearly 90% of Aldi stores, across 29 states and Washington, D.C., following successful pilots in California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Pennsylvania and Texas.”
With the integrated capability, EBT SNAP participants can buy fresh food and groceries from Aldi via Instacart’s same-day delivery and pickup services. SNAP customers shop Aldi on the retailer’s page on Instacart’s online marketplace and mobile app. After setting up an Instacart profile, customers enter their EBT food card information as a form of payment. A secondary form of payment for nonfood items — such as taxes, tips and fees, according to SNAP guidelines — also will be needed.
Next, customers enter their ZIP code to find a participating Aldi store, and then they can start shopping from Aldi’s EBT SNAP-eligible products. After filling their virtual shopping carts, customers select delivery or pickup and determine how much of their SNAP benefits they would like to allocate to the order. Instacart personal shoppers then pick and pack customers’ orders and then ready them for pickup or delivery in the designated time frame.
New with the expansion, Instacart said it will waive delivery and/or pickup fees on up to the first three EBT SNAP orders for each customer with a valid EBT card associated with their Instacart account. The San Francisco-based company said the offer, available over a 90-day period effective yesterday, will help subsidize costs for EBT SNAP beneficiaries.
“Today, we’re proud to further our mission and continue our commitment to being a long-term solution for EBT SNAP households across America,” commented Andrew Nodes, vice president of retail at Instacart. “As the country continues to grapple with COVID-19, we recognize the important role Instacart and its retail partners play in making same-day grocery delivery and pickup available to more people nationwide. We’re proud of the work we’ve done with Aldi and the USDA Food and Nutrition Service to unlock EBT SNAP online payments for more families, and we look forward to continuing to expand this important program.”
Along with the District of Columbia, the expansion includes Alabama, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont, West Virginia and Wisconsin.
“This SNAP pilot comes at a critical time in our response to the pandemic, when we are focused on doing everything we can to get our community to the other side of this,” D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said in a statement. “Now more than ever, Washingtonians across all eight wards need a way to safely access nutritious food while limiting their exposure to other people. Delivery and grab-and-go services have played an important role in our response. And now, by ensuring EBT SNAP recipients can access delivery from Aldi through Instacart, more D.C. residents can get the fresh fruits, vegetables and groceries they need while still slowing the spread of the virus and protecting their families.”
SNAP customers shopping Aldi through Instacart enter their EBT food card information as a form of payment.
Under the SNAP Online Purchasing Pilot, launched by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) in April 2019, 46 states and the District of Columbia now allow SNAP beneficiaries to shop and pay for groceries online. The latest rollout by Aldi and Instacart follows FNS’ approval allowing the two companies to expand their online EBT SNAP pilot.
“I am excited to learn of Instacart and Alid’s heightened efforts to expand safe purchasing and delivery options for New Yorkers participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, and I applaud [New York State] Sen. Kaminsky for getting S8247-A signed into law,” stated Sen. Roxanne Persaud, chair of the NYS Senate Social Services Committee. “The levels of food insecurity New Yorkers have experienced in 2020 brings to light the indiscriminate nature of hunger and need that have long plagued communities across our great state. We must continue to reach more New Yorkers in need.”
Batavia, Ill.-based Aldi U.S. began offering delivery service through Instacart in 2018. Currently, Instacart delivers from Aldi’s more than 2,000 stores in 36 states.
“I am pleased to see the expansion of the Electronic Benefit Transfer and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (EBT SNAP) in Illinois through the public-private partnership of Gov. [J.B.] Pritzker, IDHS, Aldi and Instacart,” commented Illinois State Rep. Jaime Andrade. “This initiative is a significant step in ensuring equitable food access for all.”