How Nutrition Incentive Practitioners Can Easily Partner With Grocery Retailers

NGA Foundation offers online toolkit to facilitate partnerships and make nutrition benefits available to those in need
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Since the NGA Foundation Technical Assistance Center started providing technical assistance, hundreds of retail stores have formed partnerships with nutrition incentive practitioners.

The Nutrition Incentive Hub and the NGA Foundation Technical Assistance Center (NGAF TA Center) have put together an online toolkit for nutrition incentive practitioners seeking grocery retailer partners. Created to help Gus Schumacher Nutrition Incentive Program (GusNIP) grant recipients tackle the challenges of collaborating with grocery stores, the toolkit contains 54 resources, among them project-planning guidance, information on point-of-sale (POS) technology, background on the grocery industry, and more, including a grocery project-planning tool. The resource is available on the site of the Nutrition Incentive Hub, a partner of the NGAF TA Center.

“This toolkit is a valuable resource for grantees seeking to establish partnerships with retail grocers in order to make nutrition benefits available to those in need within their communities,” noted Josh Anderegg, project director at the TA Center. “It gives them a jump-start with templates, checklists and other resources so that they can focus their efforts into building and strengthening relationships with retailers and farmers market sites.”

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Over the last four-year grant term, the NGAF TA Center has helped develop and implement nutrition incentive and produce prescription solutions with nine technology providers – including AppCard, ECRS and DUMAC/RORC – in grocery stores. Since the center started providing technical assistance, hundreds of retail stores have formed GusNIP partnerships, among them Tops Markets LLC, Charley Family Shop n’ Save, and Stoodt’s Fresh Market. The TA Center also helped Auburn University’s Hunger Solutions Institute with its successful GusNIP application, which now collaborates with four grocers in Alabama. 

“And the work is not finished,” continued Anderegg. “We are currently working to implement nutrition incentive and produce prescriptions in more than 10 stores and chains throughout the country, we maintain active conversations with numerous POS technology companies developing solutions for grocers, and we’ve been offering guidance to GusNIP applicants on writing partnership with grocers into their grant applications.”

The NGA Foundation, the 501(c)3 nonprofit arm of the National Grocers Association, has operated the TA Center since 2019, when the Nutrition Incentive Hub was chosen to receive funding via GusNIP from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. The same grant provides funding to grantees to offer nutrition incentive and produce prescriptions for SNAP customers and others who qualify for SNAP benefits. In 2023, the foundation added a second subject area to the TA Center, SNAP Online, as it operates the SNAP EBT Modernization Technical Assistance Center

Washington, D.C.-based NGA is the national trade association representing the retail and wholesale community grocers that comprise the independent sector of the food distribution industry.

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