PINE RIDGE, SD – The Add Milk! program, which gives Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants a dollar-for-dollar match when they purchase low-fat or non-fat milk, expanded as it debuted in South Dakota.

A community event on June 28 at Buche Foods in Pine Ridge, SD, marked the introduction of the Healthy Fluid Milk Incentive (HFMI) project in the state, where it is available at 14 participating stores and provides access across the Oglala Sioux Nation.

“Expanding the SNAP Healthy Fluid Milk Incentives project means greater access to affordable, nutritious dairy products for the most vulnerable Americans,” said Michael Dykes, president and chief executive officer of the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA).

The Hunger Solutions Institute (HSI) at Auburn University’s College of Human Sciences and select retailers in Alabama launched the Add Milk! Program in early June. The US Department of Agriculture awarded HSI a $3 million cooperative agreement to expand the project. It will eventually reach more than 116 retail locations throughout Alabama, California, Georgia and South Dakota. What’s more, Congress increased funding for the program in fiscal year 2023 to expand it to more stores and locations in the years ahead.

“During this time of chronic food insecurity, it’s critical we find ways to stretch the SNAP dollar further in support of the purchase of nutrient-dense foods,” Dykes said.

The HFMI pilot program was established in the 2018 Farm Bill to promote milk as part of a healthy, balanced diet – consistent with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

“SNAP incentive programs for nutritious foods like dairy, fruits [and] vegetables have the potential to make a real impact on the diets of SNAP participants and grocers’ connection with communities across the United States,” said Stephanie Johnson, RDN, vice president, government relations of the National Grocers Association (NGA). “NGA is pleased to see HFMI projects continue to expand to more independent grocers and stretch the SNAP dollar further for the purchase of nutritious dairy foods.”