Increasing the participation of Direct Marketing Farmers and Farmers Markets (DMFs/FMs) in SNAP, to improve access to fresh fruits and vegetables by low-income Americans, is a USDA priority.
SNAP benefits are issued on electronic benefits transfer or EBT cards that are used like debit cards. Traditional payment processing equipment is wired (not wireless). Using this equipment is often impractical for farmers markets and farm stands.
Through a cooperative agreement, the National Association of Farmers Market Nutrition Programs (NAFMNP) is providing access to a SNAP Mobile Application (The App) by DMFs/FMs free of cost, for one-year. The App, provided through the MarketLink program, enables DMFs/FMs to accept SNAP EBT payments on their own smart device. DMFs/FMs that maintain a minimum level of SNAP redemptions annually can continue to participate in the grant free of cost.
If you are the owner/manager of a DMF/FM and are interested in receiving assistance in participating in SNAP, as described below, please visit the MarketLink website for further information.
Purpose of the Grant
The primary goals of this grant are to:
- increase the participation of DMFs/FMs in SNAP, and thereby
- improve access to fresh fruits and vegetables by SNAP recipients.
Grant resources will be used to:
- Conduct outreach to DMFs/FMs that are not currently SNAP authorized.
- Provide access to a SNAP Mobile Transaction Processing Application (The App) to DMFs/FMs, which:
- enables SNAP-authorized DMFs/FMs to use their own mobile devices to accept SNAP benefits, and
- allows the processing of credit/debit transactions.
- Assist farmers with direct marketing opportunities that result in connections with under-served SNAP households and families and participants in other Federal nutrition assistance programs, and
- Provide training and technical support for DMFs/FMs in applying for SNAP authorization and on-going participation in SNAP.
Funding and Duration
Contingent on the availability of funds, FNS plans to award a maximum of $4 million to be used over a maximum of four (4) years for this grant opportunity.
Other Equipment Support
Please visit the EBT Equipment page to learn about other options.