Española Farmer’s Market. Courtesy/NMFMA
Las Cruces Farmer’s Market. Courtesy/NMFMA
SANTA FE – The New Mexico Farmers Market Association (NMFMA) announces that more than $2.5 million in food incentive dollars are available this year for grocery shoppers who use the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program ( SNAP), formerly known as Food Stamps, to purchase New Mexico-grown fruits and vegetables through the Double Up Food Bucks program.
Available at nearly 90 outlets across the state, including farmers’ markets, farm stands and grocery stores, Double Up Food Bucks offers SNAP customers dollar-for-dollar consideration when purchasing fresh produce. grown in New Mexico. This year, the program’s expanded rules also mean shoppers can save 50% when they buy frozen, cut and lightly processed foods (no sugar, salt, or oil) grown in New Mexico, including frozen green chiles, pre-cut fruit, unsalted peanuts and more. .
With the rising cost of food and inflation hitting New Mexicans hard, Double Up Food Bucks helps SNAP participants put healthy meals on the table, and at the same time it directly supports approximately 1,000 farmers and local food producers. There are no daily purchase limits under the program and customers need only use their New Mexico SNAP-EBT card to qualify.
“We know how hard the pandemic and inflation have hit our communities, including our growers, so we’re grateful that the new state funding is helping more people eat fresh New Mexico-grown fruits and vegetables. “said Jeff Witte, secretary of the New Mexico department. of Agriculture. “It’s a real win-win program for our state.”
Increased funding for Double Up Food Bucks is available this year due to new investments secured in the 2022 state legislative session as part of Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s $24.7 million food initiative.
The state’s Double Up Food Bucks funding will total $1.38 million this year, including special “Junior” money for lawmakers’ home districts, including those of Sen. Carrie Hamblen (Doña County Ana), Rep. Karen Bash (Bernalillo County), Rep. Matthew McQueen (Bernalillo, Santa Fe, Torrance and Valencia Counties) and Rep. Brian Egolf (Santa Fe County).
Additional funding for the program is provided by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture and the WK Kellogg Foundation.
Learn more about how the program works: Buyers start by finding the farmer’s market information board where they slip their SNAP-EBT card to receive tokens to spend at the market. If they swipe $20 on their card, for example, they’ll receive an additional $20 in chips to buy New Mexico-grown fruits and vegetables for free. Tokens do not expire, but same-day purchases are encouraged so tokens are not lost. Shoppers who visit participating farm stands and grocery stores immediately receive 50% off New Mexico-grown and cash register-eligible produce.
Find locations and hours of operation for Double Up Food Bucks outlets, including Farmers Markets, Farm Stands and Grocery Stores, at DoubleUpNM.org.
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, SNAP, administered by the New Mexico Department of Social Services, provides financial assistance to eligible New Mexicans with low incomes and limited resources to put food on their tables. Those interested in applying can contact the agency at yes.state.nm.us
Shoppers at downtown Albuquerque Growers Market. Courtesy // NMFMA Gabriella Marks
Cids food market in Taos. Courtesy/NMFMA Gabriella Marks