Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive Grants Program
The Gus Schumacher Nutrition Incentive Program [formerly known as the Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI)] grant program is a competitive program. Projects funded under this program provide incentives to low-income consumers participating in the supplemental nutrition assistance program (SNAP) to purchase fruits and vegetables at the point of sale. The projects supported by this program have the support of State agencies and include use of effective and efficient benefit redemption technologies that can serve as a replicable model for benefit redemption.
General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Department of Agriculture
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
B - Project Grants
Fiscal Year 2016
For FY 2016: NIFA reviewed 77 proposals; and 27 projects were awarded for performance periods of up to four (4) years. Total awards were $16.8 million. The success rate was 35%. NIFA panel reviewed 77 proposals; and 27 projects were awarded for performance periods of up to four (4) years. Total awards were $16,776,000. The success rate was 35%.Fiscal Year 2017
Fiscal Year (FY) 2017: NIFA panel reviewed 85 applications and 32 projects were awarded for performance periods of up to four (4) years. Total awards were $16,758,000. The success rate was 38%.Fiscal Year 2018
The Funding for GusNIP FY 2018 (formerly known as FINI) was $21,015,000 with a total of 24 awards, and 61 proposals submitted. The Funding rate was 39%.Fiscal Year 2019
The FY 2019 Funding for totaled $41,400,000 and a total of 70 projects were submitted. The funding rate is 30%.Fiscal Year 2020
It is anticipated that funding for FY 2020 will be approximately $43 million. NIFA anticipates awarding similar projects as for prior Fiscal Years.
The Agricultural Act of 2014 (Pub. L. 113-79) amended Section 4405 of the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (7 U.S.C. 7517) and established the competitive grant program, the Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive program (FINI).
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Eligible entities include governmental agencies and nonprofit organizations.
Eligible entities include governmental agencies and nonprofit organizations.
The System for Award Management (SAM) combines eight federal procurement systems, including CCR, and the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance into one new system. CCR activities are conducted through SAM (the CCR website will redirect users to SAM). Dun and Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) Number and System for Award Management (SAM): Each applicant (unless excepted under 2 CFR SS 25.110(b) or (c), or has an exception approved by the Federal awarding agency under 2 CFR SS 25.110(d)) is required to: (i) Be registered in SAM before submitting its application; (ii) Provide a valid DUNS number in its application; and (iii) Continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which it has an active Federal award or an application or plan under consideration by a Federal awarding agency. It also must state that the Federal awarding agency may not make a Federal award to an applicant until the applicant has complied with all applicable DUNS and SAM requirements and, if an applicant has not fully complied with the requirements by the time the Federal awarding agency is ready to make a Federal award, the Federal awarding agency may determine that the applicant is not qualified to receive a Federal award and use that determination as a basis for making a Federal award to another applicant. Applicants must furnish the information required in the Competitive Request for Applications (RFAs). Successful applicants recommended for funding must furnish the information and assurances requested during the award documentation process. These include, but are not limited to the following: Organizational Management Information - Specific management information relating to an applicant shall be submitted on a one time basis, with updates on an as needed basis, as part of the responsibility determination prior to the award of a grant identified under this RFA, if such information has not been provided previously under this or another NIFA program. NIFA will provide copies of forms recommended for use in fulfilling these requirements as part of the preaward process. Although an applicant may be eligible based on its status as one of these entities, there are factors which may exclude an applicant from receiving Federal financial and nonfinancial assistance and benefits under this program (e.g., debarment or suspension of an individual involved or a determination that an applicant is not responsible based on submitted organizational management information). This information collection is approved under OMB Circular Control No. 0524-0026, "Assurance of Compliance with the Department of Agriculture Regulations Assuring Civil Rights, Compliance and Organization Information." SPECIAL NOTE: Please refer to the Competitive Request for Applications (RFAs) for further specific and pertinent details. The most current RFAs are available as follows: https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/food-insecurity-nutrition-incentive-fini-grant-program RFAs are generally released annually. Hence, the RFAs provide the most current and accurate information available. Any specific instructions in the Competitive RFAs supersede the general information provided in the CFDA database.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Preapplication coordination is required. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. An environmental impact assessment is not required for this listing. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372. All Requests for Applications (RFAs) are published on the Agency’s website and Grants.gov.
Applicants must complete the Grants.gov registration process.
All applicants must have the support of the State agency prior to submitting a proposal.
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) only accepts electronic applications which are submitted via Grants.gov in response to specific Requests for Applications (RFA). Applicants must complete the Grants.gov registration process. For information about the pre-award phase of the grant lifecycle application processes see: http://www.grants.gov/web/grants/learn-grants/grants-101/pre-award-phase.html. Further, applicants must follow the instructions provided in the NIFA Grants.gov Application Guide, which can be assessed as follows: Adobe NIFA Applications. 2 CFR part 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards and 2 CFR part 400 USDA's Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards apply to this program. SPECIAL NOTE: Please refer to the Competitive Request for Applications (RFAs) for further specific and pertinent details. The most current RFAs are available via: https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/food-insecurity-nutrition-incentive-fini-grant-program RFAs are generally released annually. Hence, the RFAs provide the most current and accurate information available. Any specific instructions in the Competitive RFAs supersede the general information provided in the CFDA database.
Applications are subjected to a system of peer and merit review in accordance with section 103 of the Agricultural Research, Extension and Education Reform Act of 1998 (7 U.S.C. 7613) by a panel of qualified scientists and other appropriate persons who are specialists in the field covered by the proposal. Within the limit of funds available for such purpose, the NIFA Authorized Departmental Officer (ADO) shall make grants to those responsible, eligible applicants whose applications are judged most meritorious under the procedures set forth in the RFA. Reviewers will be selected based upon training and experience in relevant scientific, extension, or education fields, taking into account the following factors: (a) The level of relevant formal scientific, technical education, or extension experience of the individual, as well as the extent to which an individual is engaged in relevant research, education, or extension activities; (b) the need to include as reviewers experts from various areas of specialization within relevant scientific, education, or extension fields; (c) the need to include as reviewers other experts (e.g., producers, range or forest managers/operators, and consumers) who can assess relevance of the applications to targeted audiences and to program needs; (d) the need to include as reviewers experts from a variety of organizational types (e.g., colleges, universities, industry, state and Federal agencies, private profit and non-profit organizations) and geographic locations; (e) the need to maintain a balanced composition of reviewers with regard to minority and female representation and an equitable age distribution; and (f) the need to include reviewers who can judge the effective usefulness to producers and the general public of each application. Evaluation Criteria will be delineated in the Competitive Request for Applications (RFA). 2 CFR 200 - Subpart C and Appendix I and 2 CFR part 400 apply to this Program. SPECIAL NOTE: Please refer to the Competitive Request for Applications (RFAs) for further specific and pertinent details. The most current RFAs are available via: https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/food-insecurity-nutrition-incentive-fini-grant-program RFAs are generally released annually. Hence, the RFAs provide the most current and accurate information available. Any specific instructions in the Competitive RFAs supersede the general information provided in the CFDA database.
Contact the headquarters or regional location, as appropriate for application deadlines
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
From 30 to 60 days. Contact the National Program Leader (NPL), as indicated per CFDA Section # 152 - Headquarters Office regarding dates for specific deadlines, start and end dates, and range of approval/disapproval time. Information is also available via our website and may be obtained via the Grants.gov website. NIFA's respective links regarding general information are provided below: http://nifa.usda.gov/ http://www.grants.gov. SPECIAL NOTE: Please refer to the Competitive Request for Applications (RFAs) for further specific and pertinent details. The most current RFA is available via: https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/food-insecurity-nutrition-incentive-fini-grant-program RFAs are generally released annually. Hence, the RFAs provide the most current and accurate information available. Any specific instructions in the Competitive RFAs supersede the general information provided in the CFDA database.
Not Applicable. 2 CFR Part 200 - Subparts D & E apply to this program.
Specific details are provided in the Request for Applications (RFA), which are generally published annually. The most current RFA is available via: https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/food-insecurity-nutrition-incentive-fini-grant-program
How are proposals selected?
2 CFR part 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards and 2 CFR part 400 USDA's Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards apply to this program. Within guidelines established for the program as described in the Competitive Request for Application (RFA). The most current RFAs are available via: https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/food-insecurity-nutrition-incentive-fini-grant-program
How may assistance be used?
The FINI grant program projects will provide incentives to low-income consumers participating in SNAP to increase their purchase of fruits and vegetables. These projects will be evaluated for their success in increasing the purchase of fruits and vegetables and improving nutrition and health outcomes. Proposals must have the support of the State agency, provide incentives at the point of sale, and include effective and efficient technologies for benefit redemption systems that could be replicated.
All FINI grant program recipients will be required to participate in a comprehensive FINI program evaluation conducted by an independent evaluator and conduct a self-evaluation of their own project.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
PERFORMANCE MONITORING: See above for pertinent and specific details.
Relation to other audit requirements, but records must be available for review or audit by appropriate officials of the Federal agency, pass-through entity, and Government Accountability Office (GAO). This program is also subject to audit by the cognizant Federal audit agency and the USDA Office of Inspector General.
In accordance with 2 CFR Part 400 - Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards, SS 200.333 Retention requirements for records. Grantees shall maintain separate records for each grant to ensure that funds are used for authorized purposes. Grant-related records are subject to inspection during the life of the grant and must be retained at least three (3) years. Records must be retained beyond the three (3) year period if litigation is pending or audit findings have not been resolved. 2 CFR 200 Subpart D applies to this program.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formula is not applicable to this assistance listing.
Matching is voluntary. 100%. This program has a 100% match requirement with non-Federal funds.
MOE requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
In accordance with statutory time limits, project periods, including no-cost extensions of time, are not to exceed five (5) years. Further details are provided in the Award document Form NIFA-2009 and the NIFA General Terms and Conditions Grants and Cooperative Agreements (dated October 2016) at: https://nifa.usda.gov/resource/nifa-general-terms-and-conditions-grants-and-cooperative-agreements-october-2016. SPECIAL NOTE: Please refer to the Competitive Request for Applications (RFAs) for specific and pertinent details. The most current RFAs are available via: https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/food-insecurity-nutrition-incentive-fini-grant-program RFAs are generally released annually. Hence, the RFAs provide the most current and accurate information available. Any specific instructions in the Competitive RFAs supersede the general information provided in the CFDA database. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: Letter.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
Headquarters office after September 30, 2019: National Institute of Food and Agriculture 6501 Beacon Drive Kansas City, MO 64133
USDA, NIFA, Institute of Food Safety and Nutrition (IFSN)
1400 Independence Ave., SW
Washington, DC 20024 US
(Project Grants) FY 18$21,015,000.00; FY 19 est $41,400,000.00; FY 20 est $43,200,000.00; FY 17$16,758,000.00; FY 16$16,776,000.00; - SPECIAL NOTES:
(1) The difference between the appropriation and obligation numbers reflects legislative authorized set-asides deducted as appropriate, and in some cases the availability of obligational authority from prior years.
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
If minimum or maximum amounts of funding per competitive and/or capacity project grant, or cooperative agreement are established, these amounts will be announced in the annual Competitive Request for Application (RFA). The most current RFA is available via: https://nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/food-insecurity-nutrition-incentive-fini-grant-program
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
As an administrator of U.S. government support, NIFA works in partnership with grantees to ensure responsible stewardship of federal funds. Our grantees and partners are required to comply with all relevant rules and regulations. The following resources are provided to NIFA's partners and award recipients to support their adherence to federal regulations governing program performance: NIFA's primary (main) website: https://nifa.usda.gov/regulations-and-guidelines The following represent specific documents and direct links: POLICY GUIDE NIFA's Federal Assistance Policy Guide describes agency policies and procedures. https://nifa.usda.gov/policy-guide CERTIFICATIONS AND REPRESENTATIONS Certifications and representations provided through the NIFA application process. https://nifa.usda.gov/certifications-and-representations ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF USDA SUPPORT BY NIFA When acknowledging USDA support in accordance with 2 CFR Part 415, grantees must use the following acknowledgement for all projects or initiatives supported by NIFA. https://nifa.usda.gov/acknowledgment-usda-support-nifa FEDERAL REGULATIONS The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) lists all regulations published in the Federal Register. https://nifa.usda.gov/federal-regulations FOIA The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) provides that any person has the right to request access to federal documents and information such as research data. https://nifa.usda.gov/foia NEPA POLICY AND GUIDANCE The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Policy and Guidance set the standard for identifying potential environmental impacts. https://nifa.usda.gov/nepa-policy-and-guidance OGFM ISSUED CORRESPONDENCE The Office of Grants and Financial Management occasionally issues correspondence to applicants, grantees, and/or the general public for informational or clarification purposes. https://nifa.usda.gov/ogfm-issued-correspondence RESEARCH MISCONDUCT NIFA requires that all its awardees adhere to the USDA Scientific Integrity Policy and the Federal Policy on Research Misconduct. https://nifa.usda.gov/research-misconduct NIFA'S GENERAL AWARD TERMS AND CONDITIONS Award terms and conditions are determined by statutory, regulatory, and agency requirements, as well as each grant's circumstances. Terms and conditions dictate important items related to your grant, including method of payment, reporting frequency and content, and prior approval requirements. References to the terms and conditions of awards are located on the NIFA 2009 Award Fact Sheet. NIFA's general award terms and conditions (see link below) is applicable to this program, for awards with an award date on December 26, 2014 and thereafter. https://nifa.usda.gov/resource/nifa-general-terms-and-conditions-grants-and-cooperative-agreements-october-2016.
Examples of Funded Projects
Fiscal Year 2016
For FY 2016: The Healthy Incentive Program, is working in conjunction with other community partners to develop a farmer’s market incentive program, known locally as Fresh Fund. The program enhanced low-income families’ ability to access fruits and vegetables (FV) at local farmers’ markets in San Diego, places where they had previously never been able to shop. By arming SNAP participants with an EBT card, hundreds of thousands of incentive dollars were made available to increase SNAP participants; fruit and vegetable purchases at farmers’ markets. UCSD, is working in conjunction with Northgate Gonzalez Markets and other partners will develop innovative technologies that will enable the expansion of the incentive program to 40 Northgate retail markets in Los Angeles, Orange, and San Diego counties. SNAP participants who purchase FV at these markets will receive financial incentive credits that they can use toward the purchase of additional FV. When SNAP participants purchase fruits and vegetables, they receive a $1 for $1 incentive match with a maximum of up to $10.00/month. The Double Up Oklahoma (DUO) is the expansion of a successful incentive program piloted in 2012. DUO engages nine statewide partner farmers’ markets and the Cherokee Nation Tribal locations, and SNAP beneficiaries to increase the purchase of fruits and vegetables by providing incentives at the point of purchase (tokens); increasing the consumption of fruits and vegetables; and improving the livelihoods of local farmers and sell that produce at local markets. The intent is to increase the SNAP transactions at farmers’ markets in fruits and vegetables from a baseline of $43,000 to $90,000. The Double Up Oklahoma project relies primarily on a token-based reimbursement system (mobile app at the pilot sites). The tokens will have “Double Up Oklahoma” on one side, and a market insignia on the other. SNAP purchases of federally eligible items will be incentivized by $1 DUO token up to $20.00 per market visit for the purchase of locally grown fruits and vegetables. Double UP Food Bucks Flint: The Double Up Food Bucks in Flint, continues to enable any fruit, vegetable or milk purchase with Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits to earn customers matching Double Up Food bucks that can be spent on additional fresh produce. The new transaction technology pioneered in Flint is allowing shoppers to carry their benefits on a Double Up card between the farmers’ market and participating stores in Flint. This technology is being expanded to additional sites that will launch in Flint in 2017, as well as two (2) new regions statewide. From June 1, 2016 through June 30th, 2017, in Flint, SNAP customers have brought home $277,689 worth of additional fresh fruits and vegetables. A 141% increase compared to the same time-period a year earlier.Fiscal Year 2017
Fresh Checks for Fresh Produce The “Fresh Checks for Fresh Produce in the Takoma/Langley Crossroads” Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) project aims to bring affordable, fresh fruits and vegetables to the Takoma/Langley Crossroads community, a primarily immigrant, low—income area that straddles Maryland’s Montgomery and prince George’s Counties just outside Washington, D.C. The goal of the project is to increase purchases of locally grown, culturally appropriate, fresh fruits and vegetables among 1,000 SNAP shoppers at the established Crossroads Farmers Market and in the market’s growing Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program through expansion of the Fresh Checks incentive program, by providing incentives to double the amount of produce low-income shoppers can buy, they will increase consumption of fruits and vegetables, leading to improved nutrition, and thereby health benefits.Fiscal Year 2018
Ohio Produce Perks: Harvesting Health in the Heartland Through Statewide Nutrition Incentive Program Expansion Produce Perks Midwest proposes a FINI Large-Scale project to pioneer innovative approaches to scale and sustain the Ohio Produce Perks (OPP) nutrition incentive program statewide. This project will generate over $3,000,000 in fruit and vegetable purchases at 142 locations through grocery-retail and direct -to-consumer (DTC) markets, reach 70,000+ SNAP consumers, benefit 2,300+famers, and contribute new findings regarding the impact of nutrition incentive redemption at diverse outlets on produce purchasing and consumption. Committing 76% of USDA funds to direct incentives, the project will directly contribute to FINI goals of increasing fruit and vegetable purchasing by SNAP consumers by providing monetary incentives at the point of purchase. This project aligns with all 9 FINI priorities, builds upon recent federal, state, and local investment, and 7+ years’ experience operating nutrition incentive programs. In Arkansas, the number of Double Up Food Bucks sites will go up, providing SNAP beneficiaries purchasing local produce encompassing a dollar for dollar market match, up to $20/day coupled with a comprehensive nutrition outreach program. The goal is to be in every region of the state, covering at least 60 of 75 counties in Arkansas.Fiscal Year 2019
This program is in MS located in a Strikeforce area, providing transportation to Seniors to participate and will expand incentives for fruits and vegetables to go eventually state wide for SNAP recipients. More than 24 letters of support, providing a variety of partnerships, and including on-line ordering and delivery in addition to mobile markets.Fiscal Year 2020
Information is not yet available. It is anticipated that similar projects will be funded in Fiscal Year 2020. Pertinent information will be provided by Program at a future date.