How to Become a WIC Vendor
Retailers are an important part of the WIC Program, ensuring that participants purchase approved foods. You must meet all eligibility criteria to become an authorized WIC Vendor. The number of vendors in the program is limited by WIC guidelines. To be eligible, you must have:
- A SNAP License
- A Food Protection License from the RI Department of Health
- A RI Sales Tax Permit
- A Lease or Purchase Sales Agreement.
What you must do
Apply online at https://riwic.xr-wic.com/VendorPortal. Complete and submit the on-line vendor application with all the required documents and store information.
- Create a user name and password
- Provide a valid working email
- Complete application and price survey and submit
2. Complete the on-line Training and Pass the Exam
Training sessions explain the WIC Program goals, policies and procedures. You will learn about WIC-approved foods, WIC vouchers, the vendor agreement, and program violations. Training is mandatory for WIC Authorization. The training is on-line and available in English and Spanish. The applying vendor must:
- Review the training materials before taking the exam
- Pass the exam in order to be authorized.
3. Attend Mandatory Interactive Training
You must attend a manatory interactive training within one year, when offered. A formal letter will be sent to all vendors to attend a mandatory session. Trainings will be scheduled quarterly. Time and locations will vary. Vendors are required to pre-register by calling 401-222-4637 or 401-222-4630 or emailing DOH.WicVendorSupport@health.ri.gov. Vendors may send as many employees to the training as they wish. The vendor is responsible for ensuring that training attendees share the information received with the rest of the staff and administer the program in compliance with the WIC Vendor Agreement.
The WIC Vendor Unit will also have mandatory trainings and attendance will be required when there are significant policy or procedure changes. You will be notified of any such chagnes before they go into effect. Failure to attend these trainings will result in a one-year vendor disqualification. You may be required to attend additional training sessions as deemed necessary if you do not comply with the WIC Program Policies and Procedures. The WIC Vendor Program will also provide guidance throughout the year through Vendor Bulletins and mailings. You are responsible for training your employees on WIC Vendor Program policies and will be held accountable for the actions of your employees, whether or not those actions are intentional.
4. Meet Inventory Requirements and Pass On-site Inspection
Vendors must pass an on-site inspection, which will ensure that all WIC minimum inventory requirements are met in order to become WIC authorized.
For grocery or food stores, the WIC-approved food groups are milk, cereal, cheese, yogurt, juice, eggs, infant formula, baby foods, beans, peanut butter, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, canned fish, and infant cereal.
For registered pharmacies, the WIC eligible nutritional and special formulas are allowed. The pharmacy is not allowed to accept WIC checks for standard infant formulas or food items.