A new program launched today raising awareness that Farmers Markets in the Hartford area are giving extra value for SNAP recipients. Oh Snap encourages people to eat , shop, and have fun in their own backyard.
“These are locally grown produce so it’s going to be fresher, it’s going to last you longer its more nutritious and you get a chance to talk to the farmers and vendors and know where you’re food is coming from,” said Farmers’ Market Outreach Project Coordinator, Jeniffer Perez Caraballo.
Vendors like Maple Knoll Farm in Somersville.
“A lot times people feel like they can’t go to farmers markets because they don’t have enough money because everything is kind of more expensive with local product,” said Jessica Cannon-Pinney, the Maple Knoll Farm vendor. “I definitely think it’s a step in the right direction with making people feel like they can do what anybody else can.”
Oh Snap is a USDA funded program that allows certain Farmers Markets to double what you spend on your SNAP Card, something that the 40 percent of Hartford residents using SNAP can all benefit from.
“Our hopes and goals are really to get attendance up at the Farmers Markets of folks who do use SNAP,” said Caraballo. “We really do think this is a great program providing access to food that’s healthy, nutritious, and local and so we’d really love to see more people from Hartford or just snap customers in general.”
And for SNAP recipients, there’s no better way to get more bang for your buck.
“It makes people more apt to come and spend their money and get more for what they have,” adds Cannon-Pinney.
The Farmer’s Market at Billings Forge, the North End Farmers Market, the Homestead Farmers Market, and the West End Farmers Market all participate in Oh Snap and offer above-face value for SNAP Recipients.