Projects

Do point-of-sale incentives increase fruit and vegetable purchases?

Evaluating Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentives (FINI)

Challenge

Diets of most Americans fall short of meeting federal recommendations, with disparities in dietary quality across income levels. The 2014 Farm Bill established the Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) grant program to increase fruit and vegetable purchases among Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants by providing financial incentives at the point of purchase. Between 2015 and 2018, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) provided $90.3 million in grants to 114 FINI projects.

Solution

Westat conducted implementation and outcome evaluations to assess how the FINI program was implemented and the effects of the program on SNAP participants’ fruit and vegetable purchases and consumption.

Using data collected from grantees, retailers, and secondary sources, the implementation evaluation

  • Described FINI program models
  • Described contexts in which they operated
  • Described grantees’ implementation experiences
  • Described using survey data collected from SNAP participants, the outcome evaluation
  • Assessed SNAP participant awareness and receipt of incentives
  • Measured the impact of FINI on increasing fruit and vegetable purchases and consumption

Program impacts were estimated by comparing SNAP households with access to FINI to a matched comparison group with no access to FINI. A baseline and a 6-month follow-up survey with SNAP participants served as the primary data sources for this examination.

Results

As of September 2018, large-scale and community-based FINI grantees offered incentives at 3,000+ SNAP-authorized retailers in 38 states and the District of Columbia. The participating retailers issued and redeemed incentives worth $50.2 million and $35.5 million, respectively. Retailers reported increased produce sales and profits, and expressed willingness to participate in the program again.

While awareness of FINI was relatively low among SNAP participants, the program had a positive impact on average monthly fruit and vegetable expenditures—increases in average monthly expenditures on fruits and vegetables ranged from $9 to $15.

There was no measurable impact of FINI on daily cup equivalents of total fruits and vegetables consumed by SNAP participants.

This infographic illustrates the report findings: Evaluation of the Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentives Grant Program (PDF)

Read the reports:

Interim Report: The Evaluation of Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentives Interim Report | Food and Nutrition Service

Final Report: Evaluation of the Implementation of Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentives (FINI): Final Report | Food and Nutrition Service

Insights

Deep Dive with Our Experts

view all insights
  • Expert Interview

    PMGE: Blueprint for Culturally Responsive Evaluations

    May 2024

    Long known for its cutting-edge studies, the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation (OPRE), a department of the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), has…

  • Perspective

    Westat @ AAPOR 2024

    May 2024

    Westat experts are excited to head to Atlanta May 15-17, 2024, for the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) 79th Annual Conference. We’re proud…

  • Issue Brief

    Doula Support in Black Maternal Health

    April 2024

    The U.S. currently faces a crisis in Black maternal health. Black women die from pregnancy complications at a rate 2 to 4 times higher than…

Projects

Keep Reading

view all projects

How can we help?

We welcome messages from job seekers, collaborators, and potential clients and partners.

Get in Contact

Want to work with us?

You’ll be in great company.

Explore Careers
Back to Top