Arlington, VA – Today, FMI – The Food Industry Association issued its endorsement of the Ensuring Fee-Free Benefit Transactions (EBT) Act (H.R. 4103) introduced by Rep. Shontel Brown (D-OH), a senior Member of the U.S. House of Representatives Agriculture Committee. The legislation permanently prohibits processing or other related fees from being imposed on retailers or consumers participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). The bill also protects retailers from the financial burden of a migration to EBT chip cards.

FMI Chief Public Policy Officer Jennifer Hatcher stated, “FMI greatly appreciates Congresswoman Brown’s leadership in introducing the EBT Act to protect SNAP participants’ access to grocery retailers around the country. The imposition of processing or other related fees and costs outside of our control would be an unfair burden on retailers and customers. Such fees would likely result in higher costs on consumers or some stores feeling that they are unable to participate in the program, hurting SNAP participants and their communities.”

Hatcher continued, “As private sector partners with the federal government serving as points of redemption for SNAP participants, FMI and its grocery members are committed to strengthening the integrity and viability of SNAP for millions of Americans in every community. The EBT Act ensures that processing or other related fees outside of our control, which have never been imposed on retailers or consumers, will be permanently prohibited in the program and costs associated with a migration to EBT chip cards will also not be imposed on grocers. We are proud to work with Congresswoman Brown and other Members of the Agriculture Committee in enacting the EBT Act as part of the Farm Bill reauthorization.”

FMI sent an endorsement letter to Rep. Brown offering strong support for the EBT Act, which is available here.