Nutrition services

Food and nutrition services

The Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) program provides assistance to households with limited income and resources. The limits are different depending on the number and age of people in the household. The amount of the FNS benefit is based on the amount of income available to household members who buy and cook their food together. Benefits cannot be used to purchase items such as detergents, paper products, tobacco products or alcoholic beverages. Our benefit application page has information on how to apply for the FNS in Mecklenburg County.

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT)​ is the method North Carolina uses to issue Food and Nutrition Services benefits. FNS benefits are placed in an EBT or E-Funds account each month. FNS recipient households use a plastic magnetic stripe card, much like a credit or debit card, to purchase food from USDA-authorized grocery stores. Once an FNS application is processed, the head of household receives an EBT card.

Beneficiaries who are disabled or physically unable to shop for themselves can appoint a trusted person as an authorized representative. The representative will receive an EBT card which has full access to the recipient’s account and can make purchases for them. To appoint such a representative, contact our
Customer Connection call center at 704-336-3000.

The WIC program (run by Public Health) is a special supplementary nutrition program for
Women, Infants and Children (WIC). The program serves to protect the health of low-income women, infants and children up to 5 years of age who are at nutritional risk by providing nutritious foods to supplement diets, information on healthy eating and references to health care.

Would you, or someone you know, like help logging in and receiving additional information regarding food and nutrition assistance programs offered by Mecklenburg County? Mecklenburg County is actively working to reduce child food insecurity in our communities and has a team of Food Navigators who can provide you and your family with the resources and information needed to help you connect to the food and nutrition assistance programs. If you would like to connect with a food navigator or get additional information and resources via email, please continue to this page.