The SNAP program is funded by the federal government, distributed through the state to assist with food purchases for low-income households. Applicants can apply online or at a local DTA (Department of Transitional Assistance) office. The HIP program allows SNAP clients to purchase more nutritious foods, and stimulates income for local farmers. HIP is seasonal, and as of 8/2019 households of one to two persons can qualify for up to $40 per month. Three to five person households are eligible for up to $60 per month, when they purchase select items at authorized market. SNAP clients are automatically enrolled.
For example, lets say you have two people in your SNAP household, your monthly benefit amount is $100. You've already spent $70, but now that you've heard about HIP you go to the Boston Public Market in Haymarket and spend $30 on fruits and vegetables. Your SNAP balance will remain at $70, and you'll have $10 HIP dollars left for the month.
To find out who participates in the HIP program here . I would also recommend viewing the DTA Connect website to register and view your SNAP information online. The HIP program has not yet been released year round, so check Mass.gov to learn when it's active. To find out more about the HIP program visit Mass.gov.
A little extra help
If you're a senior and you feel as if the prices of fresh produce are going up, you'll find the senior coupon program helpful. Depending on what neighborhood you live in, you might have a good chance of obtaining a senior coupon. Click here to visit Mass.gov to find a list of place in your area. In the Boston area, here are the two providers: