SNAP Update: EBT Users in Louisiana Can Now Buy Groceries Online

man using Walmart grocery delivery
YakobchukOlena / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Residents of Louisiana who receive SNAP benefits under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program can now buy groceries online.

See: 5 Costly Online Grocery Ordering Mistakes You’re Making
Find: 16 Ways To Save Money on Food Now That Prices Are Rising

Under the expanded program, recipients can shop and pay for eligible foods online using their electronic benefit transfer, or EBT, cards, WAFB reported, citing statements from the Louisiana Department of Child and Family Services. They can also arrange for delivery, though they will have to pay for delivery services through a separate form of payment. SNAP benefits cannot be used for delivery fees and other associated charges.

In addition, online grocery purchasing extends to other programs that let recipients make food purchases using EBT cards. These include the Pandemic EBT, Family Independence Temporary Assistance Program, Kinship Care Subsidy Program and Disaster-SNAP.

Walmart was the first retailer to get approval through the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service online purchasing program, WAFB noted. The DCFS expects the program to rapidly spread to other retailers as well.

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See: Should You Buy Groceries at Walmart?

“With this program, families who shop for groceries with EBT cards will now have access to many of the same conveniences and features we’ve come to take for granted,” DCFS Secretary Marketa Garner Walters said in a statement. “For some of our recipients, shopping remotely could be life-changing. Many have limited transportation. Some have health concerns that make it safer to shop online.”

SNAP recipients are advised to check retailer websites for information about what they offer online. All EBT retailers must be approved by the USDA Food and Nutrition Service and meet federal online purchasing requirements before being approved to provide online purchasing services. Not all USDA FNS-approved EBT retailers are authorized to accept EBT benefits online.

Louisiana isn’t the only state looking to expand access to SNAP benefits for recipients. As GOBankingRates recently reported, South Dakota passed a bill that would allow some residents to use their benefits to buy prepared meals at restaurants.

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About the Author

Vance Cariaga is a London-based writer, editor and journalist who previously held staff positions at Investor’s Business Daily, The Charlotte Business Journal and The Charlotte Observer. His work also appeared in Charlotte Magazine, Street & Smith’s Sports Business Journal and Business North Carolina magazine. He holds a B.A. in English from Appalachian State University and studied journalism at the University of South Carolina. His reporting earned awards from the North Carolina Press Association, the Green Eyeshade Awards and AlterNet. In addition to journalism, he has worked in banking, accounting and restaurant management. A native of North Carolina who also writes fiction, Vance’s short story, “Saint Christopher,” placed second in the 2019 Writer’s Digest Short Short Story Competition. Two of his short stories appear in With One Eye on the Cows, an anthology published by Ad Hoc Fiction in 2019. His debut novel, Voodoo Hideaway, was published in 2021 by Atmosphere Press.
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