Will Your SNAP Benefits Be Impacted by the Albertsons and Kroger Merger?

Kroger Supermarket. The Kroger Company is one of the largest grocery retailers. stock photo
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Grocery chain Kroger announced it has entered a definitive merger agreement with rival grocery company Albertsons, according to an Oct. 14 company release. Bloomberg reported that this merger could create a company with more than $200 billion in annual revenue and about 5,000 stores.

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Although this is one largest U.S. retail transactions in recent years, the merger between Kroger and Albertsons will not impact SNAP benefits.

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, is the nation’s most important anti-hunger program. SNAP provides food assistance to low-income households nationwide. Benefits are distributed monthly via EBT cards, which can be used to purchase food at authorized retail stores.

Kroger has about two dozen banners, including Fred Meyer, Ralphs, King Soopers, Harris Teeter and its namesake brand, CNBC reported. Albertsons is made up of 20 banners, including Safeway, Acme and Tom Thumb. You can still use your SNAP EBT card to make an eligible purchase at these stores.

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Food can be purchased with an EBT card as long as it’s USDA-approved, such as fruits and veggies, meat and fish, breads and cereals, dairy products and snack foods. The grocers also accept EBT cards online in any state where there is online delivery and pickup service.

There may be additional savings for SNAP customers. According to the company release, Kroger plans to invest in lowering prices for customers and invest $1.3 billion into Albertsons company stores to enhance the customer experience. However, The New York Times reported that lawmakers, regulators and consumer advocates worry that companies will redirect any increase in profit to shareholders.

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About the Author

Josephine Nesbit is a freelance writer specializing in real estate and personal finance. She grew up in New England but is now based out of Ohio where she attended The Ohio State University and lives with her two toddlers and fiancé. Her work has appeared in print and online publications such as Fox Business and Scotsman Guide.
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