About the Program
Market Match is an incentive program that encourages those enrolled in the CalFresh (aka SNAP or food stamps) food assistance program to improve their diets by eating more fruits and vegetables. Market Match provides vouchers for free fruits and vegetables to CalFresh recipients when they spend their CalFresh benefits at participating farmers’ markets.
Market Match helps families with CalFresh stretch their food dollars and afford more healthy, locally grown fruits and vegetables. The program offers farmers’ market customers a dollar-for-dollar match of up to $10 when they use their CalFresh EBT cards at farmers’ markets operated by our partners at Pacific Coast Farmers’ Market Association (PCFMA).
Fresh Approach has offered Market Match-style incentives since 2009 in partnership with PCFMA. Fresh Approach is a member of the statewide California Market Match Consortium (CMMC), a group of nonprofit organizations and farmers’ market operators that all offer similar healthy food incentive programs under the Market Match banner.
Our Freshest Cargo Mobile Farmers’ Market Truck is a proud member of the Market Match Consortium. On the truck we are able to match CalFresh/EBT up to $20 per day, and can also match the cash/debit/credit of anyone receiving SSI or WIC up to $20 per day.
Market Match has proven results: helping families to eat better and farmers to sustain their operations. See the results from Market Match at PCFMA’s markets in our 2016 Impact Report.
For more information visit www.marketmatch.org
Our partners at the Pacific Coast Farmers Market Association have seen numerous impacts of the Market Match program.
• Local farmers are making more money! In 2016, PCFMA had combined EBT and Market Match sales of $365,769, which is a 44% increase from 2015.
• New shoppers are coming into the markets! The total number of CalFresh transactions increased 53% in 2016, and PCFMA markets saw a 17% increase in new, first time EBT customers.
The impacts of this program range from improving the health of families (80% of Market Match shoppers report that their family’s health has improved as a result of the program) to supporting a thriving local food system (81% of farmers surveyed reported an increase in sales because of the Market Match program). The Market Match program has provided support to more than 840 California farmers and more than 37,000 customers. While most of these customers were enrolled in the state of California’s CalFresh program, the ingenuity of CMMC’s partners also allowed Market Match to benefit those receiving Supplemental Security Income, WIC or other federal benefits.
The CA Market Match Consortium has released preliminary 2016 Statewide Results from the Market Match Program.
For more detailed information on the statewide impacts of Market Match, see CMMC’s case statement about the program.
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (commonly known as WIC) is a program that provides free supplemental foods and nutrition education, as well as other referrals, to low-income pregnant and postpartum women, and infants and children up to age 5, who have at least one nutritional risk factor.
The WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) provides additional checks to WIC participants each summer for fresh fruits and vegetables from a local farmers’ market. Fresh Approach partners with local WIC clinics to distribute these checks in the market, as redemption rates are typically higher than if the checks were distributed at the WIC clinic.
Although the Freshest Cargo Mobile Farmers’ Market Truck is not yet able to accept WIC FMNP checks, we are happy to match the cash/debit/credit of anyone receiving WIC up to $20 per day.
Thanks to Our Funders
Fresh Approach is a proud member of the California Market Match Consortium, led by the Ecology Center. The Ecology Center is a recipient of a USDA Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) program grant. Fresh Approach is a subcontractor, offering Market Match incentives that double the value of CalFresh purchases at PCFMA markets and our Freshest Cargo Mobile Farmers’ Market.
Fresh Approach’s work to increase CalFresh utilization specifically at farmers’ markets in Santa Clara County is funded by the Santa Clara County Public Health Department, through a Partnerships to Improve Community Health (PICH) Grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC).
Fresh Approach’s work to increase CalFresh redemption at farmers’ markets throughout the Bay Area, and provide training for farmers’ market managers and volunteers related to CalFresh use at farmers’ markets, is funded through a USDA SNAP Support Grant.