Numerator Announces SNAP Trip Tracker to Analyze Channel and Category Impact

Gas & Convenience SNAP Trips Up 17% vs YA; Proteins and Prepared Foods Most Impacted by End of Emergency Allotment Program

CHICAGO, May 24, 2023 (GlobeNewswire) – Numerator, a data and tech company serving the market research space, has published a SNAP Trip Tracker to understand longitudinal trends in SNAP / WIC usage and how SNAP shopping trips have changed in terms of frequency, composition, and location. While grocery trips where SNAP benefits are used tend to be larger than non-SNAP trips, the overall volume of SNAP trips, basket sizes, and units per basket have all seen declines following the end of the Emergency Allotment program.

SNAP Trip Tracker Findings Include:

  • SNAP spend is down across the board. As the Emergency Allotment program phased out in Spring 2023, the average spend for a SNAP grocery trip declined by nearly $4 (from $36.62 in January 2023 to $32.92 in April 2023). Comparatively, spend for all grocery trips (non-SNAP) declined by just over $1 in the same time period. 
  • SNAP recipients are buying fewer, cheaper items. From January to April 2023, the average number of items purchased on a SNAP grocery trip declined from 10 to 9.2, and spend per item dropped from $3.66 to $3.57.
  • Shoppers are pulling back on proteins and prepared foods. SNAP recipients are disproportionately dropping categories like refrigerated foods (19% less likely to buy in April 2023 vs April 2022), seafood & fish (18% less likely to buy), canned foods (13% less likely), breakfast foods (12% less likely), and meat (11% less likely). In April 2022, Meat appeared in over a quarter (25.8%) of SNAP shoppers’ grocery baskets but declined to 22.9% by April 2023. 
  • Beverages, Pasta, Dairy, and Produce are the least impacted categories. While all of these categories show slight declines vs. year-ago, the declines were much less pronounced than others. The least impacted category was Beverages (non-alcoholic), which appeared in 63.5% of SNAP shoppers' baskets in April 2023 (vs. 64% in April 2022).
  • SNAP shoppers are shifting to smaller format retailers. All in-store retail channels are capturing a lower percentage of SNAP grocery trips than they were a year ago, with the exceptions of Gas & Convenience stores (up 17% vs YA) and Dollar stores (up 1% vs YA). 
  • Club and Grocery stores saw the biggest declines in SNAP trips vs. YA. Club stores captured 4.2% of SNAP grocery trips in April 2023, down from 4.6% a year ago. While Grocery stores still account for the largest percentage of SNAP trips, that number continues to decline (39.2% of SNAP trips in April 2023 vs 41.2% in April 2022). 

% of In-Store Grocery Trips Using SNAP / WIC Benefits
3M ending 4/30/23 vs. YA

Department

% of SNAP Trips

% of SNAP Trips (Year Ago)

Index vs. YA

Beverages

63.5%

64.0%

99

Snacks

37.2%

40.4%

92

Dairy

35.4%

37.8%

94

Produce

34.4%

36.6%

94

Frozen Foods

26.7%

29.8%

90

Meat

22.9%

25.8%

89

Candy

21.3%

23.4%

91

Packaged Bakery

18.7%

20.3%

92

Baking & Cooking

16.8%

18.6%

90

Condiments

14.9%

16.5%

90

Source: Numerator Insights. Not all products listed are eligible for SNAP benefits but may still have been purchased alongside SNAP-eligible products and paid for out-of-pocket. See the SNAP Trip Tracker for the full list of departments.


% of Total In-Store Grocery Trips Using SNAP / WIC Benefits
3M ending 4/30/23 vs. YA

Channel

% of SNAP Trips

% of SNAP Trips (Year Ago)

Index vs. YA

Food

39.2%

41.2%

95

Mass

26.0%

26.1%

99

Gas & Convenience

17.3%

14.8%

117

Dollar

10.4%

10.4%

101

Club

4.2%

4.6%

91

Drug

2.4%

2.5%

97

Source: Numerator Insights

Numerator’s SNAP Consumer Insights Center publishes research on shopping trips where SNAP / WIC benefits are leveraged, households using these programs, and the impact of ending the Emergency Allotment program. New analyses showing geographic impact will be released in the coming weeks. Visit https://www.numerator.com/snap for the latest research.

About Numerator:

Numerator is a data and tech company bringing speed and scale to market research.  Numerator blends first-party data from over 1 million US households with advanced technology to provide 360-degree consumer understanding for the market research industry that has been slow to change. Headquartered in Chicago, IL, Numerator has 2,000 employees worldwide; 80 of the top 100 CPG brands’ manufacturers are Numerator clients.