2023 State Policy Priorities

Increase Access to Fresh Produce


An Act Relative to an Agricultural Healthy Incentives Program

This bill is sponsored by Representative Mindy Domb


Launched in 2017, the Healthy Incentives Program (HIP) allows SNAP recipients to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables directly from farmers. Since their launch, SNAP families have purchased more than $22 million in fresh, healthy, local foods

HIP Monthly Incentives (up to designated amounts):

  • $40 for families of 1-2

  • $60 for families of 3-5

  • $80 for families of 6 or more 

When they purchase local, healthy food the money that they spend is immediately added back to their EBT cards and can be spent at any SNAP retailer. 

While the program has been a tremendous success, to date it has only been authorized through the state budget. This fiscal year, the Campaign for HIP funding was able to secure an additional $12 million in the state budget, however in order to ensure residents are able to receive consistent access to healthy fruits and vegetables; the campaign is lobby for An Act Relative to an Agricultural Healthy Incentives Program (H.150/S.85) would create a permanent program to ensure the program’s long-term sustainability. Project Bread has joined the Campaign for HIP Funding Coalition to advocate for this essential program’s permanency.

About the bill

This bill would:

  1. Create a permanent program to ensure the program’s long-term sustainability.

  2. Generate new jobs in the local farm industry.

  3. Allow farmers to better protect their land.

  4. Account for more than 150,000 individuals increasing their fruit and vegetable intake by 1 serving per day.

Latest news

  • In February 2024, this bill was reported favorably out of the committee on Agriculture and has been referred to the committee on House Ways and Means.

  • In January 2024, Governor Healey released her proposal for the FY2025 budget which included $25 million for HIP. This is a large increase in funding and should be sufficient to maintain the program through the FY25. Previous budgets from the Governor’s office have only provided $5M for HIP so this represents a great commitment to this program.

  • On September 12th 2023, the Joint Committee on Child, Families, and Persons with Disabilities heard An Act relative to an agricultural healthy incentives program. Erin McAleer, Project Bread’s President and CEO, testified in front of the committee on this bill and three additional bills. Project Bread also submitted written testimony. Read more about it here. 

  • In the FY2024 budget, the Massachusetts Legislature approved an additional $5 million for HIP, but this was less than advocates were requesting. Further advocacy may be needed during a supplemental budget.