For Vermonters with limited incomes, program triples purchasing power at farmers’ markets

More than 68,000 Vermonters receive 3SquaresVT benefits to help them provide food for their families.

Those who spend some of their benefits at 28 participating farmers' markets across the state are now able to triple their spending power by purchasing fresh, local food with the Crop Cash Program.

The program is administered by the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont (NOFA-VT), which has been incentivizing the use of 3SquaresVT benefits at farmers' markets for more than 10 years.

Typically, Crop Cash matches 3SquaresVT benefits, up to $10 per day. However, during August, September, and October, NOFA-VT will double the match, providing up to $20 extra per day, tripling spending power.

Customers go to the booth at the participating market designated with the yellow “EBT and Debit Cards Accepted Here” banner. They decide how much of their 3SquaresVT benefits they would like to spend and then swipe their EBT card.

Those who receive their 3SquaresVT benefits directly deposited into their bank accounts will be given wooden tokens worth $1 to use at any vendor that sells 3SquaresVT-eligible foods.

As a bonus, customers will also be given Crop Cash, an incentive in the form of $1 bills to match their purchase, up to $10 per market day ($20 per market day in August, September, and October).

They can then exchange the vouchers for fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs from vendors at a current or future farmers' market.

The program benefits 3SquaresVT households, Vermont farmers, and the local economy by increasing the opportunity for limited-income Vermonters to use their federal benefit dollars to purchase more fresh, local produce that directly supports local farm businesses.

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