Healthy Incentives Pilot
As part of the 2008 Farm Bill, the SNAP program received $20 million for pilot projects to evaluate the health and nutrition of SNAP participants. The aim of the projects is to test incentives to increase the purchase of fruits, vegetables, and other healthy foods by SNAP beneficiaries. Hampden County, Massachusetts was chosen as the site of the Healthy Incentives Pilot (HIP) program. Participants received a 30-cent credit on their EBT cards for every dollar spent on fruits and vegetables. Preliminary results show that the pilot increased intake of targeted fruits and vegetables by 25%. Further analysis will be available in the Final Report.
Information on HIP:
- Final Report (2014)
- HIP Homepage
- Interim Report (2013)
- 2013 Report to Congress
- 2012 Report to Congress
- 2011 Report to Congress
- 2010 Report to Congress
- 2009 Report to Congress
- 2009 Summary of Evaluation/ Statement of Work
Health Incentives Pilot (HIP) Final Report
- Some Key Findings from the Final Report
- HIP households reported higher total spending on fruits and vegetables than non-HIP households.
- HIP participants were more likely to have fruits and vegetables available at home during the pilot.
- HIP participants (respondents aged 16 and older) consumed almost a quarter of a cup (26 percent) more targeted fruits and vegetables (click here) per day than did nonparticipants.
- HIP households spent more SNAP benefits on targeted fruits and vegetables than non-HIP households in participating supermarkets and superstores – $12.05 versus $10.86 on average each month – an increase of $1.19 or 11 percent
HIP in the NEWS
- Results of the Healthy Incentives Pilot, a news release from the USDA
- “A Great Step Forward for Healthier Eating and Living in the Commonwealth,” by JudyAnn Bigby, MD, Massachusetts Secretary of Health and Human Services
- “Will a 30% Incentive on Fruits and Vegetables Lead SNAP Participants to Healthier Eating?,” by Abt Associates, a private company leading the evaluation of HIP
- “The Farm Bill: Searching for Common Ground,” by Jill Krueger, Senior Attorney for the Public Health Law Network
More like This: The Healthy Food Financing Initiative
The Healthy Food Financing Initiative is a federally-funded program to increase access to grocery stores and other healthy food retailers among underserved communities.
The program has been given $400 million to assist community development institutions, nonprofits, and businesses with creating strategies to address the healthy food needs of communities. Private sector partners will be given a combination of federal tax credits, below-market rate loans, loan guarantees, and grants. These monies will go towards projects like the construction or expansion of a grocery store or the installation of refrigeration units for fresh produce in convenience stores.
The program is a joint collaboration among the Treasury Department, the Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Health and Human Services. For more information, click here.