SNAP Trafficking Transactions ending in the same amount

The most common charges that our clients receive from the USDA are:

  1. Transactions ending in the same amount ie. $4.88, $10.88
  2. Manually entered transactions
  3. Transactions occurring within a short time period
  4. Large transactions

What most grocery store owners do not know is that the charge letter is a result of a computer generated report. It is not the direct result of a lengthy USDA investigation or a complaint of any sort.

When the USDA sees that a store owner has transactions that keep resulting in the same dollar or cents amount, their internal controls trigger a charge. They do not take into consideration how the store owner prices their items, nor do they take into account specials that are being run by companies doing business with your store.

A common charge that we see is the special store promotion of Dorito’s and Coke for $2.50.  Obviously, purchasing two of these packages will result in a $5.00 charge.

Red Bull and Monster energy drink sales are also problematic as many store owners sell full size cases at or near $20.00 per case. For example, if a store owner sells two cases of energy drinks each at $21.00, then, even if one customer buys two cases bi-weekly, then, it is obvious that the charge of $42.00 will be reoccurring as a transaction over the course of a given month. However, this may be the cause of a charge and an investigation.

Make sure that when you sell cases of energy drinks that your customers are not reselling the merchandise. At times, some of our clients have had their customers resell their merchandise in the parking lot of the grocery store and they have had to call the police and bar them from their premises. If you have knowledge of large items that are severable (case of 20 cans that can be resold individually), then you must not sell any product by way of EBT to these customers.

SNAP Trafficking Transactions ending in the same amount

Leave a Reply