UCCE is helping CalFresh shoppers double food dollars at farmers markets
Across California, CalFresh shoppers can use their EBT cards at most farmers markets and double the value of their benefit, up to $10 per family each market day.
“This benefit is underused,” said Chutima Ganthavorn, nutrition, family and consumer sciences advisor in Riverside and San Bernardino counties. “There may be a perception that farmers market prices are higher than in regular grocery stores.”
To help promote the Market Match program that makes shopping at farmers markets more affordable for CalFresh customers, Ganthavorn worked with the UC Agriculture and Natural Resources news and information outreach in Spanish office to develop videos in English and Spanish that clearly explain the program for potential users.
“Our program, CalFresh Healthy Living, UCCE, provides nutrition education to CalFresh-eligible participants in Coachella Valley to promote increasing consumption of locally grown, fresh fruits and vegetables,” Ganthavorn said. “Increasing buying power at farmers markets helps participants incorporate delicious, local produce into affordable meals for the whole family.”
To use Market Match, CalFresh recipients visit a kiosk at the market and use their EBT card to purchase $10 in wooden tokens. The program provides an additional $10 in tokens for purchase of fruits and vegetables only. The $20 can then be used to purchase items at all the farmers' booths that day at the market. Shoppers can look up participating farmers markets by going to FMFinder.org.
“Wow! These (videos) are terrific,” said Megan Goehring, the manager of the Palm Springs farmers market. “Will share on social media today.”
Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program vouchers and Women, Infants and Children vouchers can also be used at participating farmers markets.
Below are the videos and their YouTube URLs for easy sharing:
English - https://youtu.be/dz6R_l123AE/span>