SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food support, is an electronic benefit used like money to buy food. SNAP benefits are for qualifying single people and families with or without children. The benefit amount is based on income and certain expenses and the number of people in the household. To see if you may qualify for the program, there are a few questions you can answer by completing the food support questionnaire.

Applications are available by contacting:

  • Renville County Human Services – Call 320-523-2202 or 800-363-2533 or in person.     
  • You can also access an application through ApplyMN or print out and complete the Combined Application Form (CAF). (It is important to get the Part I of the CAF completed and into the office as soon as possible. Your assistance may begin from the date you sign the Part I and take it to the office).

SNAP requires an interview which can be completed over the phone or in-person.

FAQ’s

1. How do I use my electronic food support benefits card?

How to Use Your Minnesota EBT Card

2. What do I do if my food support benefits card is lost or stolen?

Call customer service (24 hours a day, 7 days a week) at 1-888-997-2227 to report your card lost or stolen. Effective 9/2012, replacement cards can no longer be obtained directly at the county office and must be mailed. It can take up to 5 business days to receive your replacement card. A $2.00 card replacement fee will be deducted from either your food or cash benefits.

3. Do I have to use all my food support benefits up in the month I receive them?

No; however, if your benefits are not accessed for a long period of time they may be removed from your card. If this happens, call your food support worker for assistance.

4. How long does it take after I apply to know if I qualify?

It depends on your situation. For some emergency situations, benefits can be issued within 5 days. In most situations, the county will notify you by mail of a decision within 30 days.

5. How are food support benefits received?

Food support benefits are distributed through a plastic card that looks like a credit or debit card. It is called an Electronic Benefits or EBT card. Every month, the card is filled up with the money to buy food at places that accept food support, such as grocery stores. The card is swiped and a code number entered (called a PIN or Personal Identification Number). The PIN helps keep benefits safe if the card is ever lost or stolen. The cost of food is subtracted from the amount of money on the card.

6. What foods are eligible for purchase through the Food Support Program?

Food support benefits may be used for foods to eat such as bread and cereal, fruit and vegetables, meat, fish, and poultry, and dairy products; seeds and plants which produce food to eat. Food support benefits may NOT be used for any nonfood items, such as pet food, soap, paper products, and household supplies; beer, wine, cigarettes, or tobacco; vitamins and medicines; food that will be eaten in the store; hot foods.