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Retailer Eligibility - Clarification of Criterion A and Criterion B Requirements

Last Published: 01/19/2018

To be SNAP-authorized, a store generally must meet one of two eligibility standards: Criterion A (staple food stock) or Criterion B (staple food sales). Staple foods are the basic food items that make up a significant portion of an individual’s diet and are usually prepared at home and consumed as a major component of a meal.

The final rule titled "Enhancing Retailer Standards in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)" (the 2016 final rule), published on December 15, 2016, made changes to Criteria A and B requirements. Those changes were included in the "Breadth of Stock,” “Definition of Variety,” “Depth of Stock,” “Accessory Food,” and “Need for Access” provisions of the 2016 final rule. Thereafter, Sec. 765 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017, enacted on May 5, 2017, prevented implementation of the “Breadth of Stock” and “Definition of Variety” provisions of the 2016 final rule, and directed FNS to continue to utilize the breadth of stock and definition of variety requirements that were in place prior to the 2014 Farm Bill, until FNS promulgates future rulemaking to provide more flexibility in the definition of variety. As of the publication of this memorandum, the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) has not been updated to reflect the changes required by the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017. Thus, the purpose of this memorandum is to clarify the requirements for Criterion A and Criterion B in effect on

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