The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has posted a document to its website containing technical questions and answers for retailers interested in participating in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) online purchasing. The document includes frequently-asked questions regarding SNAP online transactions, refunds, interoperability amongst states, and more. USDA opened up the application process to all retailers and states at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, and almost all 50 states have launched to date.
NGA is advocating for provisions that would make it more feasible for independents to participate in SNAP online purchasing to be included in the next COVID-19 bill that Congress is currently negotiating. Click here to read FNS’ SNAP online Q&As, which may be updated as additional technical questions are received.
Our Government Relations team has been working with grocery industry leaders to make sure that four key priorities for independent grocers are included in the next coronavirus relief package.
With the introduction of the House and Senate versions of the next relief package and the start of bipartisan negotiations, it is more important than ever that Members of Congress hear from you.
Urge your Members of Congress to tell leadership to protect independent businesses from frivolous lawsuits, reward essential frontline workers, strengthen federal nutrition programs, and fix unemployment compensation in the Phase Four COVID-19 relief
Grocery store prices for all categories of food except for fresh fruit increased by 5.6 percent compared to this time last year, according to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Economic Research Service’s Food Price Outlook. The increases are largely attributed to supply chain disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Adapting to the supply chain transitions caused by stay-at-home orders placed upward pressure on retail prices. Dairy, poultry, and meat products were particularly affected by the price changes.
Navigating Dairy Growth Post COVID-19
Wednesday 8/19/2020 12PM CDT
Midwest Dairy has partnered with IRI to conduct quantitative research to learn who has increased their spending on milk, cheese, yogurt and butter at retail since the start of the pandemic, what their purchase drivers have been and how this growth can be sustained long-term through overcoming purchase barriers. The topline findings from this study are being shared for the first time at the Dairy Experience Forum on July 15. Join us at Noon August 19 as we take a deeper dive with a heavy focus on actionable insights.
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, independent grocers are working to accommodate unprecedented consumer demand for online grocery orders, but only a limited number of grocery retailers are currently approved to accommodate SNAP customers with online ordering. Although 40 states have launched SNAP online purchasing, independent grocers have been left behind while larger competitors participating in the original pilot program have moved into states across the country.
This has caused great concern for family-owned, privately-held grocers who face technical challenges and barriers to participate, such as lack of resources or financial capacity.
I urge you to support the Expanding SNAP Options Act (H.R. 7535/S. 4202) in the Phase Four COVID-19 relief package. This important legislation would create a technical assistance center for SNAP online purchasing and provide financial assistance to retailers that demonstrate need.
Please click here to urge your Members of Congress to include the Expanding SNAP Options Act (H.R. 7535/S. 4202) in the Phase Four COVID-19 relief package. This legislation would provide technical assistance to grocers implementing SNAP online purchasing programs and defer expensive costs for retailers that lack the capacity and resources necessary to get online.
On Tuesday, Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA), introduced the FRNT LINE Act. This bill would provide payroll and income tax relief for essential workers, such as grocery industry associates, who have continued their work during the coronavirus pandemic. Learn more here.
The pandemic has brought a sales boom for grocers, but it is also reshaping the avenues that retailers use to interact with shoppers, Jeff Wells writes. He notes that the loss of traditional staples, such as salad and hot bars, means grocers need to find innovative new ways to engage with socially distant shoppers, such as the recent introduction of a robotic salad bar at Heinen's. Full story can be read here.
To help stop the spread of COVID-19, some Missouri counties and municipalities have begun issuing orders that require people to wear masks while in public. In some places, businesses can face fines if they do not adhere to the orders.
Each order has unique caveats about where and when masks are required. Missourians are strongly encouraged to follow orders in their own regions as well as review local orders before traveling to another part of the state.
You can see view the ordinances below for each county or city (as of July 23rd). Since last week, Cape Girardeau County has introduced an ordinance. (CLICK ON CITY FOR MORE INFO)
COUNTY MASK ORDERS:
Cape Girardeau County
St. Louis County order
MUNICIPAL MASK ORDERS:
North Kansas City
St. Louis City
If you would like a "Wear a Mask" sign for your store, click HERE to view and print one.
Top Senate Republicans are pushing to give federal courts jurisdiction over lawsuits stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic as part of a temporary set of legal protections. The proposal, authored by Sens. McConnell (R-KY) and Cornyn (R-TX), would temporarily offer schools, businesses, health-care providers and nonprofit organizations legal protections when people allegedly exposed to COVID-19 sue them. The Senate GOP plan resembles the recently introduced H.R. 7528, the Get America Back to Work Act. To read the proposal, click HERE.
The Missouri Grocers Association | 315 N Ken Ave, Springfield, MO 65802 | Phone: 417-831-6667 | Fax: 417-831-3907