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USDA Launches Summer EBT Grocery Benefit Program in 33 States

The USDA is launching a new Summer EBT program to help fill the gap in family nutrition over the summer break. The program is expected to serve almost 21 million children across the country, providing a total of nearly $2.5 billion in grocery benefits over summer 2024 and will fill a critical gap in services for families during the summer months.  


As part of the program states will provide families with $120 per eligible child for the summer to buy food at grocery stores, farmers markets or other authorized retailers – similar to how SNAP benefits are used.


33 states have signed on to implement the program in its first year. Participating states are marked in dark green: 


State legislators have an important role to play in securing this funding for families in their communities. 100% of the benefits are covered by federal fundings as well as 50% of the administrative costs associated with implementation. Participating states will be responsible for providing the remaining 50% of administrative costs. 


How State Legislators Can Engage:

  • Help secure 50% administrative funding match: Benefits are fully funded under the program but states are required to secure funding for 50% of the administrative cost of the program. State legislators can work with their colleagues, USDA regional office, and Governor’s office to secure adequate funding for their state to participate in the program. Find out how much funding your state will receive, is needed for the match, and how many families the program will serve here.  
  • Spread awareness to eligible families: If your State plans to implement Summer EBT in 2024, consider hosting a launch event in your district and/or partner with local agencies to get the word out. You can also utilize your platforms such as newsletters or community events to make sure eligible families are enrolled.   
  • Encourage your state to sign up for summer 2025: For states not currently implementing the program in 2024, USDA is actively working with states to ready them for participation in 2025. State legislators can work with their state agencies and the USDA to become a participating state in 2025. 
  • For support: To learn more about how you can engage on Summer EBT in your state, reach out to the USDA Food and Nutrition Service at [email protected].
  • Learn more: Find out more information about the program and USDA’s other summer meal programs including summer meal sites which provides free meals to families and the home-delivery summer meals for rural communities. 



Did you know? 

There is a significant economic benefit to Summer EBT: When fully implemented, more than 30 million children will benefit from Summer EBT – this means a lot of dollars will be flowing into local communities across the country. Research from SNAP, a similar type of benefit program, has shown how SNAP increases local economic activity. It is estimated that each SNAP dollar that is redeemed generates an estimated $1.54 in economic activity. Find out more here. 



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