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Get Extra EBT Benefits with the Massachusetts Healthy Incentives Program

Get Extra EBT Benefits with the Massachusetts Healthy Incentives Program

You may be able to get extra EBT benefits through the Massachusetts Healthy Incentives Program! This program puts money back on your EBT card when you use your food benefits to purchase healthy, locally-grown fruits and vegetables.

If you’re shopping with SNAP benefits, you know that you never actually get enough to eat properly. This new program rewards healthy choices with extra food benefits so that you can buy even more food!

What is the Healthy Incentives Program?

Massachusetts’ Healthy Incentives Program puts up to $80 per month back on your EBT card when you use your food benefits to purchase healthy, locally-grown fruits and vegetables from participating farm vendors.

The refund is instant so you don’t have to wait to get those extra benefits. There’s no paperwork required and no hassle to use this program. However, only purchases made at participating vendors will qualify for a HIP refund.

How much can I get from the Healthy Incentives Program?

The cap for your account will depend on your household size. You can only receive up to $40, $60, or $80 in rebates through this program.

Household SizeMaximum Monthly HIP Amount
1-2 people$40
3-5 people$60
6+ people$80
Data from mass.gov

The benefit cap resets on the first of each month and does NOT roll over. You will not be able to exceed the maximum amount at any time.

The monthly reset happens on the first, regardless of when your SNAP benefits are actually deposited into your account. If you still have SNAP benefits on the 1st of the month, you can use those HIP benefits right away.

Who can use HIP?

HIP is available to every person in Massachusetts who uses SNAP benefits to purchase groceries. You do not need to do anything to sign up or register for this program. It’s automatic.

However, you do need to purchase eligible food items from participating vendors in order to receive the rewards from this program.

How does the Healthy Incentives Program work?

The Healthy Incentives Program is an automatic benefit program, which makes it very easy to use. You just need to follow this quick three-step process!

  1. Find a participating vendor.
  2. Visit the vendor and purchase eligible food products with your SNAP benefits.
  3. Check your EBT balance to confirm that you received the incentive.

Eligible food products include any variety of fresh fruits and vegetables. You can also earn HIP rewards if you purchase canned, dried, or frozen fruits and vegetables that meet certain health guidelines. Canned items don’t necessarily have to be in cans, as they can also be in pouches, jars, or other shelf-stable containers. However, in order to be eligible, the product cannot contain any added salt, sugar, fat or oils aside from whatever minimal sugar is required to preserve the vegetable in the canning process.

The state lists the following items as eligible:

  • Applesauce
  • Beans
  • Fresh fruit (whether whole or cut)
  • Fresh vegetables (whether whole or cut)
  • Herbs
  • Mushrooms
  • Nuts
  • Pickled vegetables or fruits (without vinegar)
  • Plants that grow food
  • Potatoes
  • Seeds that grow food

This is just an example, not an exhaustive list. There are many other food items that would be eligible for this program.

It’s important to remember that you earn Healthy Incentive Program credits by purchasing eligible foods, but the extra money you earn through this program can be spent on any EBT-eligible food.

What vendors process HIP benefits?

You can use Massachusetts Healthy Incentives Program at a variety of different retailers, including many farmers markets, farm stands, mobile markets, and community supported agriculture (CSA) programs.

You can find a map of literally hundreds of participating vendors with the DTA Healthy Incentives Program Finder.

EBT Discounts

Don’t forget that you can also use your card to get some crazy EBT discounts in Massachusetts!

Summary

You can get extra EBT benefits from the Massachusetts Healthy Incentives Program when you purchase healthy, locally-grown products with the food benefits! This program is run by the state, so the refunds are given automatically. It is one of the easiest double up programs we’ve discovered.

Nicole is the owner and lead researcher for Low Income Relief. She has over 20 years of professional research and writing experience, and she has been solely dedicated to investigating low income topics for the last 10 years. Nicole started Low Income Relief after a personal experience with poverty. When her husband was medically discharged from the US Army, their family experienced tremendous financial hardship. Nicole was able to gather help from multiple community agencies and move into a nearby low income housing unit in just two weeks! Since then, Nicole has been dedicated to helping low income families in crisis. She regularly spends hundreds of hours combing through countless resources to make sure that Low Income Relief has the most comprehensive and complete resource directories on the internet today. Prior to starting Low Income Relief, Nicole worked as a novelist, journalist, ghostwriter and content creator. Her work has been featured in various print and online publications, including USA Today, The Daily Herald, The Chronicle and more. Her work has also been featured by Google for Publishers and other leading industry publications.