EBT, Market Match and credit card services end 30 minutes prior to market closure at the Downtown Farmers’ Market and 15 minutes prior to market closure at all other markets.
EBT/CalFresh, WIC & Senior Nutrition Coupons
All SCCFM markets accept EBT, WIC and Senior Nutrition Coupons. Locate the information booth and a market manager can process your EBT card and give you tokens to use at the farmers’ markets. Tokens have a value of $1 and there is no change given. EBT stands for Electronic Benefit Transfer and is the method for distributing CalFresh benefits (formerly known as Food Stamps and currently known federally as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits), California Food Assistance Program benefits, and cash aid benefits.
ANNOUNCEMENT! In recognition of CalFresh Awareness Month the Felton, Downtown SC, Scotts Valley, Westside SC and Live Oak markets are once again offering a DOUBLE MATCH program during the month of MAY, or until funds are exhausted. CalFresh/SNAP participants will receive two Market Match tokens for every EBT token for the first ten dollars swiped. Ten dollars of EBT becomes thirty dollars at the markets in May. Onsite CalFresh application assistance will be available in rotation at the Downtown SC and Felton markets. Thank you to Second Harvest Food Bank and the Santa Cruz County Human Services Department for making it possible!
Year-round the Market Match (MM) Program offers farmers’ market customers with CalFresh (EBT/SNAP) cards a dollar-for-dollar match up to ten dollars. For example, if a CalFresh customer swipes their card for ten dollars they receive ten additional dollars in market match script at no charge. A seven dollar swipe equals a seven dollar match. A twenty dollar swipe equals a ten dollar match as the match maxes out at ten dollars. These matching dollars can be used to purchase fresh vegetables and fruits only.
The goal of this project is to encourage CalFresh (EBT/SNAP) recipients to take advantage of fresh, locally-grown fruits and vegetables. By offering an incentive that makes fresh produce more accessible, we are helping shoppers stretch their food dollars while keeping their families healthy.
The Market Match Program at the Downtown SC Market continues to be doubled, $10 of EBT is matched with $20 of Market Match, thanks to the City of Santa Cruz! This special is expected to last through June of 2022. SCCFM is always looking for additional funds to extend this special offering.
History of the Market Match Program
The Market Match program is managed statewide by Roots of Change. In addition to SCCFM, ten other Market Match partners — known collectively as the California Farmers’ Market Consortium – are working to increase access to fresh and healthy foods for low-income consumers at local farmers’ markets. All of the Market Match partners are dedicated to increasing the incomes of California farmers by expanding access for low-income communities. This program stimulates the local food economy while supporting community health and food security.
The Market Match program is made possible through two general funding sources, a Specialty Crop Block Grant offered by the California Department of Food and Agriculture and philanthropic efforts that raise funds for Market Match incentive dollars. SCCFM has also pledged funding which has boosted support for the Market Match program at various markets. Additional supporters in past years have included the City and County of Santa Cruz, Second Harvest Food Bank and the Kaiser Permanente Foundation.
Beginning in June of 2020 the City of Santa Cruz began sponsoring an ongoing Double Match at the Downtown Santa Cruz Farmers’ Market with a federal grant related to COVID-19 and essential services. Currently this grant is expected to fund the Market Match Double Program at this market only into 2022.
The Senior Voucher Program has not been announced for 2022. As soon as SCCFM receives information regarding the program we will announce it here. We encourage seniors who are eligible to access our EBT/Market Match programs which are more robust than ever.
When the Senior Voucher Program resumes seniors who qualify (based on age and income) will receive a booklet with $20-$40 in vouchers. The vouchers can be used to purchase fresh vegetables and fruit at the farmers’ markets. The booklets may be distributed at the farmers’ markets or by mail, this is yet to be determined. Thank you for your patience. You can direct questions to the Senior Council at (831) 688-0400.