As of this week, customers with SNAP in the states of Colorado, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin can now use their cards to buy groceries from the website's services and have them delivered to the customers' doors. Partnering companies working with Amazon are included in the deal, the release says.
That list brings the total number of states where these benefits are available up to 25 along with Washington DC, with more states to come soon, the company said.
The full list of the states where the partnership is available can be found here.
The partnership came about due to an agreement between Amazon and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Amazon has also made it possible to utilize the SNAP benefits even if the user in question doesn't have an Amazon Prime account, the press release says.
The partnership is a positive for lower-income residents of the states mentioned above as it expands the options many have for grocery shopping, particularly during the pandemic when many are wary of going out into public spaces. Amazon Fresh and Amazon Pantry are also available for use for SNAP benefit holders.
As the pandemic quickly changed American life in March and April, companies set about making it possible for users to use EBT cards to pay online. But according to Nandan Sheth, the head of global digital commerce with Fiserv, the shift has been in motion for years now, since the 2014 Farm Bill made it possible to pay electronically with participating grocers.
Sheth told PYMNTS that Fiserv's PIN-on-Glass technology, rolled out earlier this year, had been a boost, allowing for quick access to PIN-based online authentication for a number of devices. He said that many SNAP customers might keep transitioning to electronic grocery services with the rest of the consumer population.