The Field & Fork Network will receive a $25,000 grant to bring a food assistance program to Suffolk County.
The program, called Double Up Food Bucks, doubles the value of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps, that is spent at participating farmers markets, mobile markets, corner stores, small retail locations, farm stands and grocery stores, helping residents to bring home more locally grown fruits and vegetables.
The Field & Fork Network began administering the Double Up Food Bucks program in 2014 at seven farmers markets in western New York. The program has since grown to be in 29 counties and over 150 farmers markets, mobile markets, grocery, small retail and farm stand locations.
Double Up Food Bucks can only be used to purchase New York-grown fruits and vegetables or food bearing plants such as tomato plants, etc. Anyone receiving SNAP benefits is automatically eligible. Participating retailers must serve New York-grown produce and accept SNAP benefits.
The food program comes in time for National Farmers Market Week, which runs from August 1 to August 7 and works to highlight how much value markets bring to their communities. Residents can visit www.chooseli.org to find participating Double Up Food Bucks locations.