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Updated SNAP Requirements for Store Operators (LOMCSA)

Updated SNAP Requirements for Store Operators (LOMCSA)

The Department of Agriculture (USDA) today released final regulations governing retailer eligibility for redeeming Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. The final rules accept many of the arguments that LOMCSA, PMAA, and NACS has made throughout the rulemaking process, both in comments filed with USDA as well as in testimony before the House Agriculture Committee.

Once a more detailed summary of the final rule becomes available, we will forward that on to all our store operators.

 

While there were some significant changes from what was originally proposed, the final rule still goes further than Congressional intent. 

 

A quick overview of the final rule's key provisions is below:

 

  • To continue to accept SNAP benefits at your store you will need to have at least 84 staple food items (not 168 as was proposed) on your shelves regularly starting one year from the date that this rule becomes effective. This minimum stock of 84 items includes: 7 varieties in each of the 4 staple food categories (1.Veggies/Fruits 2. Dairy 3. Meat 4. Bread/cereals, with 3 units of each variety.
  • If you don't yet accept SNAP benefits at your store, but want to apply to do so, you will need to have at least 84 staple food items on your shelves regularly starting four months from the date that this rule becomes effective. (Should be published in the Federal Register soon)
  • Multiple ingredient foods will continue (proposed rule wouldn't count multiple ingredient foods) to be counted as staple foods in the category of their main ingredient.  This means that a can of cream of mushroom soup with a listed main ingredient of "mushrooms" would be considered a staple food in the vegetables or fruits staple food category.
  • Also if more than 50% (not 15% as was proposed) of your business's total gross sales come from prepared foods cooked or heated onsite by the retailer, before or after purchase, you will no longer be eligible to accept SNAP benefits;  
  • If you are a store owner who accepts SNAP benefits and your store breaks SNAP rules, then your name, the name of your store, and the nature of your violation will be made public starting on the date that this rule becomes effective.
  • The rule does not change what food is eligible for purchase with SNAP benefits.

 

The table below shows the number of items required under the new requirement, the proposed requirement, and the old requirement.

 

NUMBER OF STAPLE FOOD CATEGORIES

NUMBER OF STAPLE FOOD VARIETIES PER CATEGORY

NUMBER OF STOCKING UNITS PER VARIETY

TOTAL NUMBER OF FOOD ITEMS REQUIRED

New Requirement

4

7

3

84

Proposed Requirement

4

7

6

168

Old Requirement

4

3

1

12

 

 

 

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