by: Natalie Dreier, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
WASHINGTON – Amazon and six other online retailers will soon be able to take government assistance as payment for groceries under a new plan.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, which oversees the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, consumers who are eligible for benefits will be able to use their assistance accounts on Amazon, FreshDirect, Safeway, ShopRite, HyVee, Inc., Hart’s Local Grocers and Dash’s Market.
They are using the program to test the feasibility of allowing the use of SNAP benefits across the country.
Right now, only those retailers listed in certain areas are being tested.
The pilot program includes:
Amazon – Maryland, New Jersey, New York
FreshDirect – New York
Safeway – Maryland, Oregon, Washington
ShopRite – Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania
Hy-Vee, Inc. – Iowa
Hart’s Local Grocers – New York
Dash’s Market – New York
The program will test online ordering and payment, according to the USDA, and is designed to provide healthy groceries for homebound elderly and disabled customers.
Read more from the USDA here.