Market Match

Market Match is California’s healthy food incentive program, which matches customers’ federal nutrition assistance benefits, like CalFresh and WIC, at farmers’ markets. In 2014, Market Match will be offered at 150 farmers’ markets across the state by seventeen community based organizations and farmers’ market operators.

ABOUT

When people use their federal nutrition benefits at farmers’ markets, Market Match provides matching funds so that they can buy even more fruits and vegetables. For example, a shopper who wishes to spend $10 of CalFresh benefits at the farmers’ markets gets an extra $10 to spend on fresh produce.

Market Match empowers low-income shoppers to make healthy food choices by overcoming financial barriers. It supports job creation, local economic development, and civic engagement by leveraging the benefits of farmers markets for a broader community. Further, Market Match helps stabilize and support rural communities by providing an additional income for small farmers selling at farmers’ markets.

The Ecology Center is working to expand Market Match to every region of the state. Read about our Los Angeles Market Match expansion, made possible through funding from First5 Los Angeles. Click here to see our May 1st 2014 press release about the expansion.


HOW IT WORKS

Eating healthy is easier when you have access to fresh, affordable choices.

STEP 1. Find the farmers’ market nearest you that offers Market Match incentives. You can use our NEW Farmers’ Market Finder page for information on CalFresh, WIC and Market Match participating farmers’ markets across the state.

STEP 2. Use your EBT card or your WIC benefits. Ask at the market’s information booth or market manager how to use your CalFresh EBT card. The market staff person will swipe your card and you will receive CalFresh EBT tokens to spend on any eligible food item at the market.

STEP 3. Receive your Market Match scrip. The market staff person will match your CalFresh and WIC benefits, providing you with Market Match tokens or scrip to spend on fruits and veggies.*

STEP 4. Get more fruits and vegetables. Spend the Market Match tokens with any farmer in the market that sells fruits, vegetables, nuts and food plant starts.

* While supplies last, some restrictions apply. Talk to your farmers’ market manager for details on your local Market Match program.


HISTORY

The Market Match program was founded by Roots of Change in 2009. Since then, the Market Match program has received funding from the California Department of Food and Agriculture, helping to incentivize low-income shoppers spending their benefits on California-grown fruits, vegetables and nuts and becoming life-long shoppers.

In 2013, Roots of Change partnered with the Ecology Center to transition the program’s oversight, convening, and leadership. The Ecology Center is working to unify the branding and delivery of the program and to expand its scope to markets across the state in 2014 and beyond.



IMPACT

In 2013 the Market Match program generated around $1.5 Million in additional revenue at the 138 participating farmers’ markets. Market Match benefits shoppers, farmers and farmers’ markets. Learn more about the benefits of SNAP Healthy Food Incentive Programs:

2012-2013 SNAP Healthy Food Incentives Cluster Evaluation


LOCATIONS

Our NEW Farmers’ Market Finder page provides information on CalFresh, WIC and Market Match participating farmers’ markets statewide!



GET INVOLVED

Thank you for your interest in Market Match! To get involved in any of the following ways, please contact Carle Brinkman, Program Manager.

OFFER MARKET MATCH: Market Match relies on the dedication, hard work and passion of market operators and community partners like those in the CMMC. 2015-2016 Market Match New Partner Applications are now available. Applications are due 9am, Monday, November 3rd, 2014. Please email carle@ecologycenter.org to request an application.

VOLUNTEER: The Market Match program needs volunteers for community outreach projects and at-market administration. There may be a Market Match program in your area.

DONATE: In 2013 so far, we’ve served over 31,000 Market Match customers, impacting the take-home revenue for almost 1,000 California farmers. We want to continue this great work and expand Market Match to more markets across the state. We need your help! Your donation will allow us to offer this amazing program to the California communities most in need.


FUNDERS

The Market Match Program is funded in part by the California Department of Food and Agriculture, through the Specialty Crops Block Grant Program.

Our other funders include:
Aetna Foundation
Archstone Foundation
Atwater Village Neighborhood Council
Bank of America
C.C. Meyers Foundation
City of Elk Grove
Eileen Fisher
First 5 LA
Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services
Kaiser Permanente
Marin Health and Human Services
Naked Juice
Pacific Coast Farmers Market Association
Sacramento City Council Member Steve Hansen
Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op
Sierra Health Foundation
Whole Foods
Wholesome Wave