Press Release

Instacart Launches Instacart Health, a Sweeping New Initiative to Deliver the Ingredients for Healthier Living

Sep 28, 2022

Company unveils new products, partnerships, research, and policy commitments to make nutritious food more accessible and affordable, and drive better health outcomes for all. 

Company announces Instacart Health and new commitments in collaboration with the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health to underscore the critical intersection of food and health and emphasize the need for even more public-private sector partnership.

WASHINGTON D.C., September 28, 2022 – Instacart, the leading grocery technology company in North America, today announced Instacart Health, a sweeping new initiative designed to deliver the ingredients for healthier living. Through new products, strategic partnerships, cutting-edge research, and policy advocacy commitments, Instacart Health is built to help increase nutrition security, make healthy choices easier for consumers, and expand the role that food can play in improving health outcomes. Launched in coordination with today’s historic White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health, in which Instacart CEO Fidji Simo participated, Instacart Health underscores the critical intersection of food and health, the important role that private sector companies can play, and the need for public-private sector partnership. 

Today more than one in 10 people in the United States don’t have access to reliable nutritious food [1], and more than 100 million people suffer from diet-related disease [2]. These trends are the impetus for Instacart Health, which includes a range of new products, partnerships, and policy commitments focused on three key pillars: Nutrition Security, Health Made Easy, and Food as Medicine. 

“Instacart has become a staple in millions of households, which puts us at the heart of the relationship that people have with food, and therefore, their health. We have a responsibility to use the power of our platform, products and partnerships to expand access to nutritious food and improve health outcomes,” said Fidji Simo, CEO of Instacart.

Instacart Health also includes cutting-edge research partnerships and a new policy agenda aimed at advocacy for programs that support access to nutrition and better health outcomes for all. 

Continues Simo, “Our nation’s hunger and health problems are complex and require cross-sector collaboration. At Instacart, we’re building the technologies that can help many organizations – from healthcare providers, insurers, nonprofits, employers, and health experts – give more people access to fresh, nutritious foods with dignity, speed, and convenience. We know we can’t solve these issues alone and we’re honored to be among those participating at the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition and Health.”

With the launch of Instacart Health, Instacart today announced a comprehensive suite of new products, partnerships and commitments: 

New Innovative Products & Partnerships

Bolstering Nutrition Incentives & Food Prescriptions with Fresh Funds

Today Instacart announced Fresh Funds, a new product that enables any organization – from nonprofits, to insurance companies and insurers, to employers – to give people funds to buy nutritious food from grocery retailers on the Instacart App. With Fresh Funds, organizations will be able to dictate and limit spend to certain food categories, like produce, for example, to incentivize healthy habits and give people access to healthy foods that may otherwise be cost-prohibitive. 

In the coming weeks, Instacart plans to launch a Fresh Funds pilot with Partnership for a Healthier America, a leading nonprofit working to transform the food landscape in pursuit of health equity. The pilot will start in Indianapolis, with the goal of expanding nationwide in 2023.

Further, research has shown that produce and food prescription programs positively impact health outcomes including glycemic control, HIV, and hypertension [3] [4] [5]. Instacart is committed to building technology that supports these programs and will be launching Fresh Funds pilots with a range of public and private sector organizations in the coming months to enable them to further scale their food prescription programs.

Enhancing Collaborative Care with New Care Carts

Instacart also announced a new product called Care Carts, designed to give healthcare providers and caregivers the ability to order groceries on behalf of someone else. Whether you’re a healthcare provider who needs to deliver groceries and medical supplies to patients post-hospital discharge, a clinician who wants to deliver groceries for a patient’s prescribed meal plan, or a caregiver who wants to send groceries to a friend or family member from afar, Care Carts is a new way to send groceries to others.

A variety of organizations and services are now using Care Carts in new and innovative ways to expand their offerings to their clients, including digital nutrition platform Good Measures in partnership with WellCare of Kentucky; hospital-at-home solution provider Medically Home; food solutions and care management platform NourishedRx in partnership with a number of health plans; and digital nutrition services Season Health and Foodsmart

Taking Steps to Modernize Medicaid Benefits

For many low-income people who rely on Medicaid, programs that address barriers to health – including time and transportation – can make a big difference in health outcomes. Used separately or in combination, Fresh Funds, Care Carts, and shoppable Lists can help remove these barriers to health. 

In the coming weeks, WellCare of Kentucky will begin offering its Medicaid members who have been screened for high blood pressure the option to participate in Good Measures’ Good Food Prescription program. A Good Measures registered dietitian will work with participants to personalize a nutrition plan for them, and will have access to Instacart’s Care Carts to deliver the groceries in the plan directly to the client. 

New Health Information with Health Tags

With Health Tags, customers can now view up to 23 item-level labels, like low-salt, low-sugar, keto, gluten-free, while they shop on Instacart. Health tags are now enabled across 500,000 items in Instacart’s catalog. For consumers with food sensitivities and dietary restrictions, this type of information is extremely important as it allows them to more easily identify the items that best fit their needs. 

More Healthy Recipes on the Instacart App & Beyond

Instacart is expanding its library of healthy recipes in partnership with Hearst Magazines by adding a robust collection of new recipes from their lifestyle, health and wellness brands, including Women’s Health, Men’s Health and Prevention magazines. Instacart has partnered with top publishers like Dotdash Meredith and Hearst Magazines to create a library of 3,000+ recipes from beloved Dotdash Meredith titles like EatingWell, Parents, and All Recipes and Hearst titles like Delish that customers can shop with a single tap. 

Instacart is also announcing that it’s partnering with Found, the largest weight care clinic in the United States focused on personalized behavior change and biology, to make their expert-developed nutrition guidance and recipes shoppable via Instacart. They will be adding Instacart’s Shoppable Recipes button to their recipe pages, enabling their members to easily start an Instacart order based on recipes in their nutrition plan.

Driving Discovery with Digital Pop-Ups

Starting today, consumers will begin to see even more health inspiration via new Pop-Ups in the Instacart App. Pop-Ups are featured sections on the home feed of the app that serve up digital aisles full of inspiration. For example, in the coming weeks consumers will see a Vegan Favorites Pop-Up featuring a range of vegan ingredients, snacks, and desserts. Consumers will also see a Low Sodium Lifestyle Pop-Up which will include sodium-free staples and low sodium snacks and desserts. 

Fresh Shopping Inspiration with Ciara & Other Influencers 

Instacart announced that it has teamed up with Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Ciara to share her shoppable Cart full of her favorite groceries that help keep her body and mind fueled for the demands of her active and busy life as a singer, dancer, and mom of three.

“My family and I live by the saying ‘health is wealth’ and we know much of that starts with what we eat,” said Ciara, Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter. “I have a very busy life between running after my 3 kids, spending time with my husband and running my businesses. In the midst of all of that, I have learned that eating nutrient-rich foods actually makes me feel better and keeps me going. I’m excited to team up with Instacart for Instacart Health because I believe in their commitment to help make nutritious food accessible for everyone, and to help people make more informed decisions about what they’re buying to fulfill their personal health needs.”

Instacart is also partnering with a range of health influencers, chefs, registered dietitians, and wellness experts to share their Carts and recipes, so people can get inspired and try new things with just a few taps. Instacart recently launched a new in-app shopping experience with Carts, as part of its newest creative platform “The World is Your Cart.” Carts enable pop culture personalities, retailers, and creators to create collections of shoppable, curated content, helping consumers discover new products – bridging the gap between inspiration and reality by getting their new discoveries delivered the same day. 

New Commitments to Increase Nutrition Accessibility & Affordability

Expanding Affordable Payment Options 

Today Instacart announced its commitment to work with the USDA to expand EBT SNAP payment access to Instacart grocery partners in all 50 states in 2023, with the goal of expanding EBT SNAP access to all Instacart grocery partners by 2030. 

Over the past two years, Instacart has been working closely with government leaders and retailers to modernize, strengthen and scale important programs like EBT SNAP that help expand access to nutritious food. The company pioneered the EBT SNAP retailer onboarding process, enabling over 70 retail banners across more than 8,000 stores to accept EBT SNAP payments online via Instacart, reaching a majority of the nearly 34 million people experiencing nutrition security in the United States. 

Instacart is also making it easy for consumers to shop with EBT SNAP benefits inside the store with new technology available to retailers that lets consumers easily scan a product and find out if it’s eligible for EBT SNAP benefits, saving people time as they shop.

In 2023, Instacart plans to enable customers to shop and pay for everyday essentials with their Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefits — a government cash assistance program that helps low-income families pay for household items like diapers and toilet paper. Families will also be able to use TANF benefits to cover service and delivery fees on Instacart, which aren’t currently covered by EBT SNAP benefits. 

New Long-Term Commitment with Partnership for A Healthier America 

Today Instacart announced that it’s teaming up with Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) to bring 10 million servings of fruits and vegetables to families across the US over the next three years via fundraising campaigns, joint programming and technology offerings. With this commitment, Instacart is proud to support PHA’s commitment to bring 100 million servings of fruits and vegetables to nutrition-insecure families with fundraising campaigns, joint programming and technology offerings to further our joint mission of nutrition security for all. 

“For too long, too many people have lacked access to nutritious food because it’s either too far away, too expensive, or both,” said Nancy E. Roman, President and CEO of Partnership for a Healthier America. “With help from Instacart and their Fresh Funds initiative, we can break down these barriers to ensure everyone – no matter how far away they are from a grocery store – has access to the fruits and vegetables they deserve. Creating a more equitable food system can’t be done alone, and we’re thrilled that Instacart is helping us achieve our goal of providing 100 million servings of fresh produce to families in need by 2025 by committing to provide 10 million of those servings.”

The Instacart Health Policy Agenda: Advocating for Real and Lasting Change 

Instacart today announced its Instacart Health Policy Agenda, which outlines the company’s top three policy priorities and new advocacy commitments to help expand access to nutritious food and improve health outcomes. With the new Policy Agenda as our roadmap, Instacart is committed to working with policymakers, researchers, nonprofit leaders, private sector partners, and other stakeholders to help shape and enact policies at the federal, state, and local level that aim to: 

  • Modernize food assistance programs to increase equitable access to nutritious food
  • Increase the availability of affordable, nutritious food in underserved urban and rural areas
  • Provide equitable access to health-tailored groceries and food prescription programs

This includes advocating for policies that expand online access to EBT SNAP and TANF; remove barriers to bringing WIC online; expand infrastructure to improve access in nutrition-insecure communities, provide universal school meal coverage for children; support produce prescription and medically-tailored meals as part of the healthcare system; and more.

Further, with one of the world’s largest online grocery catalogs and a birds-eye view of consumer buying trends, Instacart is also supporting exciting research to better understand the impact of online grocery on food access, affordability, nutrition, and health. For example, Instacart, No Kid Hungry and the University of Kentucky this week published a new study examining the impact of online grocery for households with lower incomes — including households that receive EBT SNAP benefits — in urban and rural areas. The study found that online grocery shopping helps families with lower incomes, including households that receive EBT SNAP benefits, stretch their grocery budgets, save time and money, reduce stress and stigma, and adopt healthy shopping habits.

With the launch of Instacart Health, the company intends to invest in more cutting-edge research to better understand food access gaps and racial nutrition disparities — as well as the role online grocery can play in addressing these challenges. 

Learn more about Instacart Health at www.instacart.com/company/health and see a complete view of quotes from a variety of partners, experts, community leaders, and public officials. 

About Instacart 

Instacart, the leading grocery technology company in North America, works with grocers and retailers to transform how people shop. The company partners with more than 900 national, regional, and local retail brands to facilitate online shopping, delivery and pickup services from more than 75,000 stores across more than 13,000 cities in North America on the Instacart Marketplace. Instacart makes it possible for millions of busy people and families to get the groceries they need from the retailers they love, and for more than 600,000 Instacart shoppers to earn by picking, packing and delivering orders for customers on their own flexible schedule. The Instacart Platform offers retailers a suite of enterprise-grade technology products and services to power their e-commerce experiences, fulfill orders, digitize brick-and-mortar stores, provide advertising services, and glean insights. With Instacart Ads, thousands of CPG brands – from category leaders to emerging brands – partner with the company to connect directly with consumers online, right at the point of purchase. For more information, visit www.instacart.com/company, and to start shopping, visit www.instacart.com. For anyone interested in becoming an Instacart shopper, visit https://shoppers.instacart.com/.

[1] USDA. “Food Security: Key Statistics & Graphics.” April 22, 2022. https://www.ers.usda.gov/topics/food-nutrition-assistance/food-security-in-the-u-s/key-statistics-graphics/#:~:text=The%20prevalence%20of%20food%20insecurity%20was%20unchanged%20from%202019%20to,to%2010.5%20percent%20in%202019.

[2] The Washington Post. “Millions are suffering from diet-related diseases. What number will make us pay attention?” November 2021. https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/healthy-eating-obesity-diabetes-heart-diseases/2021/11/30/3b4e2cfc-51fe-11ec-9267-17ae3bde2f26_story.html

[3] National Library of Medicine. “A Pilot Food Bank Intervention Featuring Diabetes-Appropriate Food Improved Glycemic Control Among Clients In Three States.” November 2015. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26526255/

[4] National Library of Medicine. “Comprehensive and Medically Appropriate Food Support Is Associated with Improved HIV and Diabetes Health.” February 2017. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5359179/

[5] National Library of Medicine. “Dietary Impact of Produce Prescriptions for Patients With Hypertension.” November 2018. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30447106/