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WIC: Approved Foods Shopping Tips

You may have questions as you start using your WIC (Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children) food benefits. We are here to help. We’ve listed some common questions and answers. You can also call your WIC office.

WIC FAQs (frequently asked questions)

These are common questions we get about WIC.

You can find your WIC food benefits on:

WIC food benefits expire every 30 days. You can’t use benefits after they expire.

You may have up to three months of benefits on your eWIC card at a time. Keep your card. Your WIC office will let you know how to get new benefits.

You can spend WIC food benefits at any Wisconsin WIC-approved grocery store or approved pharmacy. Your WIC office can give you a list of WIC-approved stores near you. You also can find a list on the MyWIC app.

Keep your eWIC card in a safe place. Call your WIC office if your card is lost, stolen, or damaged.

These tips can help you plan to use your WIC food benefits:

  • Know how many WIC food benefits you have before you shop.
  • Plan which foods to buy. Find WIC-approved foods in the WIC Shopping Guide, P-44578.
  • Avoid shopping around midnight if you can. Cash registers often update at this time. This can make it harder to buy WIC food.

Yes. You must set up a personal identification number (PIN) before you shop with your eWIC card.

  • Choose a number that you will remember.
  • Do not share it with others.
  • If you enter your PIN wrong four times, it will lock. To unlock your PIN, take one of these actions:
    • Call the number or go to the website on the back of the eWIC card. Set your new PIN. You may shop after your PIN unlocks at midnight.
    • Call your WIC office to unlock your PIN. You may shop right away after your PIN is unlocked. You can use your current PIN or set a new PIN with your WIC office.

You can change your PIN at any time. Call the number or visit the website on the back of your eWIC card.

You can find WIC-approved foods here:

You can only buy WIC-approved food brands and types with your eWIC card. Foods also must be listed in your WIC food benefits.

At checkout, follow these steps:

  1. Tell the cashier you are using your eWIC card. Ask if you need to separate WIC items from non-WIC items.
  2. Use your eWIC card first. Then, use other payments as needed (for example, FoodShare).
  3. Apply any coupons to WIC foods. If the coupon is for a non-WIC food, we suggest using it on a separate purchase.
  4. Keep your receipt. Review the WIC food benefits you have left.

If you try to buy a WIC food, but it is not accepted, follow these steps:

  1. Ask for help. If the cashier can’t help, ask for the store manager. If they can’t help, do one of the following:
    • Do not buy the item.
    • Choose another brand or type of food.
    • Buy the food with cash, FoodShare, or another payment. WIC cannot pay you back for food you buy with another type of payment.
  2. Keep your receipt. Take a picture of the food or write down the UPC barcode.
  3. Contact your WIC office as soon as you can. They will work to fix the issue, if needed.

Note: Some cash registers print a receipt in the middle of your purchase. It lists the WIC foods and your WIC balance. Review the receipt closely. If you make food changes to your purchase, you may have to swipe your eWIC card more than once.

You should only buy foods and infant formula you need. Return food or formula you do not use to your WIC office.

Note that you cannot trade WIC food or formula for cash, credit, or other items. You also cannot sell or give away WIC food or formula.

Call your WIC office if:

  • You have questions about shopping for WIC foods.
  • You were not able to buy a food that you think is WIC approved.
  • Your eWIC card is lost, damaged, or stolen.
  • You had foods removed from your WIC benefits in error.
  • Your grocery receipt does not match what you bought.
  • You would like to complain about how store staff treated you.
Last revised June 15, 2022