Sunday, April 11, 2010

Rite Aid now accepts SNAP (Food Stamps)

Capital Area Food Bank recently shared the news that Rite Aid stores are accepting EBT cards.   As you know, there is a Rite Aid on the corner of 13th and U Streets, NW (1306 U Street NW).

According to a Market Watch press release, Rite Aid made this decision to "help meet the needs of its customers."   EBT cards are used in DC by those who benefit from the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), known previously as Food Stamps.

More from the press release:

More than 38 million Americans received food assistance through SNAP last year, according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

SNAP, formerly known as the Food Stamp Program, is administered by the USDA and offers families and individuals at certain income levels financial assistance in purchasing food and beverages.   Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) is the electronic system that allows a SNAP recipient to authorize transfer of their government benefits from a federal account to a retailer account to pay for products received.

SNAP benefit recipients are issued EBT cards that look like debit cards. Customers swipe their EBT card like a credit card at the time of the purchase and the cash register automatically deducts the eligible purchase (any food, candy or non-alcoholic beverage) from the balance on their card.   For additional details on SNAP, visit

"One in eight Americans are receiving food assistance through SNAP according to the USDA," said Brian Fiala, Rite Aid Executive Vice President, Store Operations.   "With nearly 4,800 Rite Aid stores nationwide offering assorted groceries, accepting EBT cards is just another convenience we can offer to our customers and help make their lives a little easier."

There are six Rite Aid stores located in Washington, DC.

Certainly, the more outlets accepting EBT cards, the better for residents using SNAP.   Of course the issue is the nutritional value (or lack thereof) of the food purchased in these retail outlets.

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