The benefits of accepting SNAP at local food access points such as farmers markets are numerous. It increases access to locally-grown food to all demographics, it benefits the vendors by increasing their sales, and it benefits the local economy by keeping federal dollars circulating locally. Before markets began accepting SNAP, many customers did not have the option of shopping at markets because vendors could not swipe their cards. Now, many have the option of purchasing food from farmers’ market and supporting local producers.
After several successful years of area markets accepting SNAP benefits, CFAC began implementing a SNAP incentive program called Double SNAP Dollars (DSD) in 2015. DSD matches SNAP benefits, dollar-for dollar. For example if a customer spends $5 of their SNAP benefits, they will be matched $5 to be spent on local fruits and vegetables. Different markets match different amounts from $10 to $20.For more information on accepting SNAP or other food benefit programs at your market, please visit the Montana Department of Agriculture’s resource portal or contact Shay Farmer, CFAC’s Regional Food Access Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org for questions on how to get started.