Together, Farmstead and Forage can enable more customers to use EBT and SNAP payments to buy groceries online.
E-grocer Farmstead and Forage, a third-party processor and PIN provider that helps merchants and platforms accept EBT online, have formed a new partnership to help fight food insecurity. Farmstead will integrate Forage’s technology into its own e-commerce operations by Q2 2022 so that it can begin to accept EBT/SNAP payments for e-commerce orders, making it the first online-only grocer to do so. The online grocer will also integrate Forage’s technology into its Grocery OS solution, which it licenses to other grocers to help manage their own e-commerce and delivery operations, thus making it easier for those grocers to also accept EBT/SNAP payments online.
Together, Farmstead and Forage can enable more customers to use EBT and SNAP payments to buy groceries online when access to physical grocery stores may be limited and other online options come with high fees. With Forage, retailers gain access to 42 million Americans and a $160 billion EBT spend, while also allowing low-income individuals and families to use their services.
“The online grocery market for EBT users increased by 2,700% between March and July 2020, and has remained high,” said Justin Intal, co-founder and CEO of Los Angeles-based Forage, which works with retailers throughout the processes of USDA application and tech integration, reducing time to launch from about 18 months to six months. “Right now, those customers have few choices for grocery e-commerce, because not enough grocers accept EBT for online orders or include affordable home delivery. Those grocers who do accept EBT have access to over 40 million Americans who receive SNAP benefits. We’re excited to work with Farmstead to expand the number of grocers accepting EBT online.”
“Addressing food insecurity has been a core part of Farmstead’s mission since day one,” noted Pradeep Elankumaran, co-founder and CEO of Burlingame, Calif.-based Farmstead. “Our entire business is based on the premise that grocery delivery should be for the masses, and that it’s possible to have fresh, high-quality groceries delivered to your front door at the same prices you’d pay at the store, with no additional fees. Accepting EBT at Farmstead, and integrating EBT into Grocery OS, marks a big milestone for us, and we’re proud to be working with Forage to make this a reality.”
Using artificial-intelligence technology and a dark-store model, Farmstead can deliver at no charge, within a one- to two-hour window, in a large continuous radius. The company offers this same technology stack, Grocery OS, to grocers that want to improve e-commerce operations and compete more effectively.