FRESHFARM Markets believes that fresh, local, and healthy food should be available to all people, regardless of their means. We work to lower the barriers to food access that low-income families and individuals face. By utilizing five different nutrition assistance programs, we make farm-fresh food more accessible to people from all walks of life. Read below for more details on each program.1. SNAP (EBT/FOOD STAMPS)
FRESHFARM Markets accepts SNAP at 10 markets:
· 8 in DC: by the White House, CityCenter DC, Dupont Circle, Foggy Bottom, H Street NE, Penn Quarter, and Union Market
· 2 in MD: Silver Spring, MD and Annapolis
· 2 in VA: Ballston), and Crystal City)
Instructions: To use your SNAP, go to the Market Information Tent, tell the staff how much money you would like to spend, and they will swipe your EBT card for the amount you request. You're then given your requested amount in $1 wooden tokens.
The same rules apply to SNAP at farmers markets as any other merchant. SNAP dollars are not eligible for hot/prepared foods/concessions (sandwiches, ice cream, etc) or non-food items (soap, flowers, etc). SNAP tokens are valid for produce, meat, eggs, dairy, breads/bakery items, honey, jam, and packaged foods. No change is given.
If you don't use all your tokens that day, you can save them to use another day, or at any of the other FRESHFARM Markets. Tokens never expire.
To see if you qualify for EBT/Food Stamps, contact:
1. District of Columbia Department of Human Services at 202-727-5355 or online.
2. State of Maryland Department of Human Services at 800-332-6347 or online.
3. Virginia Department of Social Services at 855-635-4370 or online.
2. MATCHING DOLLARS PROGRAM
In order to lower economic barriers to local and healthy foods, FRESHFARM Markets offers a Matching Dollar incentive to SNAP, WIC and Senior FMNP customers at the 12 markets that accept SNAP (listed above).
Instructions: If using SNAP, at the FRESHFARM Markets Information tent, tell market staff how much of your benefits you would like to spend. Market staff will match your redemption with FREE Matching wooden tokens with a maximum of $15 free tokens per person per visit. For example, if you redeem $15 in SNAP, you will get an additional $15 free Matching Dollars tokens to spend.
If using WIC or Senior FMNP checks, you need to spend those checks first with authorized farmers. Staff at Market Information can direct you to the farmers that are able to accept WIC and Senior FMNP. The farmer will give you a receipt. Take this receipt to the Market Information tent and we will match what you have spent with FREE Matching Dollars wooden tokens.
Matching Dollars tokens (red $1 tokens) never expire and are valid at all FRESHFARM Markets locations. They are valid for purchase of any farmers market food, including hot/prepared foods/concessions (sandwiches, ice cream, etc). They are not valid for non-food items (soap, flowers, etc). No change is given.
FRESHFARM Markets Matching Dollars program is supported by Wholesome Wave, the Maryland Farmers Market Association, and by individual donors. Donations to Matching Dollars are greatly appreciated.
3. WIC FARMERS MARKET NUTRITION PROGRAM (WIC FMNP)
WIC (Women, Infants and Children) FMNP checks are specifically for purchasing fresh fruits and vegetables at authorized farmers' stands (at this time regular WIC coupons cannot be used at farmers markets). DC and Maryland both have WIC FMNP programs. Virginia does not offer this benefit.
You can also use your WIC Fruit Cash-Value checks (DC) and your WIC Fruit and Vegetable checks/FVC (MD) to purchase fruits and vegetables at authorized farmers stands. WIC FMNP checks must be used by November 30 in DC and in MD. WIC Vegetable and Fruit Cash-Value checks (DC) and WIC Fruit and Vegetable checks/FVC (MD) are issued year-round and can be used year-round at authorized farmers stands.
Instructions: Ask staff at Market Information which farmers accept WIC. Be sure to ask for a receipt from the farmer so you can get your FREE Matching tokens. Bring the receipt to the Market Information tent to receive FREE Matching Dollars tokens, eligible for any food at market (see #2 above).
To learn about eligibility for WIC programs, contact:
1. DC Community Health Administration/WIC State Agency at 202-442-9397
2. MD Department of Agriculture at 410-841-5770
3. MD State WIC Program at 410-767 5242
4. SENIOR FARMERS MARKET NUTRITION COUPONS (SENIOR FMNP)
The purpose of the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) is to provide fresh fruits and vegetables to senior citizens with limited resources. The program expands the awareness and use of farmers markets and also supports and promotes the daily consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables. Under the SFMNP, recipients receive checks to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables from an authorized farmer's stand (the same farmers who are authorized to accept WIC). SFMNP is issued in the form of checks in the summer, which participants can spend at farmers markets by the expiration date.
Instructions: Ask staff at Market Information about which farmers are authorized to accept Senior FMNP checks. Spend the checks with those farmers, get a receipt for your purchase, and bring it back to Market Information. Staff will match what you spend with FREE Matching Dollars tokens, eligible for any food at market (see #2 above).
To learn about eligibility for Senior FMNP coupons, please call:
District of Columbia Department on Aging at 202-724-5622
Maryland Department of Agriculture at 410-841-5776
Virginia Arlington Agency on Aging at 703-228-1700
5. PRODUCE PLUS (FOR DC RESIDENTS ONLY)
Produce Plus is a nutrition benefit made available by the DC Department of Health to increase access to fruits and vegetables. It is distributed in the form of $5 checks at participating farmers markets. They are issued to farmers markets for distribution beginning in June and the program lasts through September.
To be eligible, you must be a DC resident and a participant in ANY of the following programs:
1. SNAP (Food Stamps/EBT)
2. WIC (Women/Infants/Children food assistance)
3. SFMNP (Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program)
4. CSFP (Commodity Supplemental Food Program)
5. SSI (Supplemental Security Income)
7. TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families/cash assistance)
Instructions: To receive the checks, show our farmers market staff proof of participation in any one of these programs (for example: EBT card, Medicaid card, or WIC checks). You do not have to show ID or spend any of your benefits to be eligible.
You will receive two $5 checks for a total of $10. You may redeem these for fruits and vegetables with any participating farmer. Ask staff which farmers can accept the checks. You can get the checks once per market day you can also get them at our other markets and receive the checks again the next week.
No change is given and these checks cannot be matched with the Matching Dollars program.
The checks all expire September 30, 2015. You may use them at any time before then, at any of our participating markets. All 8 of our DC markets participate in Produce Plus.
We will distribute checks until the Produce Plus funds runs out.
For more information on Produce Plus, please call:
DC WIC Agency at 202-442-9397
If you have questions please contact Lindsay Wallace or Juliet Glass at 202-362-8889 or email lindsaywallace @freshfarmmarkets.org or julietglass@ freshfarmmarkets.org.