Orcas and San Juan Farmers’ Markets announce new food benefits

The Orcas and San Juan Island Farmers Markets are set up to accept SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) also known in Washington as Basic Food. SNAP helps people with low incomes make ends meet by providing monthly benefits to buy food. To find out if you might be SNAP-eligible or to apply, visit www.washingtonconnection.org or call 1-877-501-2233.

Participating programs for clients who are on SNAP or are income-eligible include:

• Market Match – up to $40 match at the San Juan Island and Orcas Island Farmer’s Market for clients on SNAP

•Fresh Bucks – up to $20 match for clients on SNAP or who are income-eligible

• One Canoe –up to $90 in Veggie Rx coupons to spend on local produce

Market Match voucher clients who have an EBT card (including P-EBT) can shop at the Farmers Market and for every $1 spent using EBT they receive matching dollars from the State Market Match program up to $40, doubling their dollars up to $80 to spend at the market. It’s easy to use your food benefit, Stop by the Market Manager’s booth to swipe your EBT card for the amount you want to spend and you will receive additional SNAP Market Match dollars to buy fresh fruits and vegetables, mushrooms, fresh herbs and plant starts. You will receive EBT tokens to spend on any EBT eligible food including fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, dairy, eggs, breads, seeds, and plant starts that can be grown for food. Spend the tokens and market match dollars at the various booths to buy food items.

They also have privately funded local matching programs thanks to the generosity of donors for those who are on SNAP or may income qualify. For those who are on WIC, Medicaid/Apple Health, or have an income at or below 185% of Federal Poverty Level (for example $49,025 for a Family of 4) there is a Fresh Bucks match program providing an additional $20 every time you shop at the San Juan Island Farmers Market and at the San Juan and Orcas Food Co-op. Starting in June thanks to One Canoe, the San Juan and Orcas Farmers Market will offer Veggie Rx dollars up to $90 total to spend at the market. To learn more contact the health department at 360-378-4474 or stop by the farmers market booth.