Low-income families in Glasgow/Barren County will again be able to double their purchasing power when buying Kentucky-grown fruits and vegetables at Bounty of the Barrens Farmers Market.
Kentucky Double Dollars is administered by Community Farm Alliance (CFA), with support from Bluegrass Farm to Table and funding from WellCare, Kentucky Agriculture Development Fund and Passport Health. The program provides financial incentives to low-income families to help them buy fresh, Kentucky-grown produce across the state at 41 farmers markets, three retail locations and 10 Fresh Stops (neighborhood pop-up markets).
Last year, more than 10,000 Kentucky Double Dollars customers redeemed more than $91,000 in incentives, which increased income for 1,027 farmers across the state. CFA sees the program as a great opportunity for everyone involved, because it is increasing local food access and on farm revenue, and that wouldn’t be possible without local farmers’ markets.
“The Kentucky Double Dollars program has been successful across the state, and we look forward to growing and expanding into a number of new communities in 2019,” said Brittany Steffey, Kentucky Double Dollars Program coordinator. “The fresh fruits and vegetables offered at the farmers market can play a vital role in the health and wellness of the community, and the program expands access to this local, healthy food while supporting Kentucky farmers. Kentucky Double Dollars is in its third year and has consistently put more money in the pockets of farmers and more fresh, local food on the plates of those who need it the most.”
To participate in the Kentucky Double Dollars Program, customers swipe their Electronic Benefits Transaction (EBT) card or show their Senior FMNP vouchers at the Bounty of the Barrens Farmers Market manager’s booth, where their benefits will be matched dollar for dollar for up to $20 per day for SNAP or $8 per day for Senior FMNP. Recipients will then receive market tokens that can then be used for SNAP eligible food at the market and Kentucky Double Dollars tokens or vouchers to be spent on locally-grown produce.
“As executive director of Sustainable Glasgow who sponsors the Bounty of the Barrens Farmers Market, I have experienced personally the impact this program has, not only for food supplement recipients, but the community as a whole as well as our market vendors who are small farmers. The program allows for so many to benefit from fresh fruits and vegetables that are locally grown while supporting local farms and farmers,” said Brandi Button.
The Bounty of the Barrens (BOTB) is a local, producer-only farmers’ market supported by Sustainable Glasgow. They offer a variety of produce, meats, eggs, cheeses, baked goods and other local food and handcrafted items from Barren and surrounding counties. At the BOTB, you can meet local farmers and growers and learn how your food is produced. Buying local is a great way to build the local economy, buy healthy foods and connect with your neighbors. Together, they are creating a community of educated consumers who understand the health, economic and environmental benefits of supporting local farms and producers. The market is every Saturday, 8 a.m.-noon on the courthouse square April 27-Oct. 26 and the winter market is at the Barren County UK Ag Extension Office the first and third Saturdays from November-April. For more information, visit the website www.bountyofthebarrens.com or Facebook page facebook.com/BOTBFM/.