Lewes Farmers Market offers incentives to SNAP customers

June 10, 2016

By Gwen Guerke, Communications Coordinator

The Food Bank of Delaware is partnering with the Historic Lewes Farmers’ Market to help build awareness of how SNAP/ EBT shoppers can stretch their shopping dollars.

SNAP, formerly known as food stamps, is an acronym for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

Board member Nancy Staisy and Niamh Shortt want to increase awareness of the unique Market Match program at the Lewes market.

Here’s how it works: A SNAP customer registers, spends up to $20 at the Saturday morning market, takes his/ her receipts to the SNAP table and receives $20 in tokens to spend at the market that day.

Although Lewes is a producer-only market and one of the few markets in Sussex County to accept SNAP EBT, the interest has been less than anticipated.

The HFLM received a federal grant to identify best market practices, and that will include expanding the use of SNAP benefits at markets.

Staisy, Shortt and the legion of dedicated volunteers who staff and promote the market are seeking ways to provide more community access to fresh and local food. They also want to remove barriers, including the perception that the market is more expensive than local grocery stores.

This summer the Lewes market relocated from the Historic Complex near the resort community’s retail center to the George H.P. Smith Park at DuPont and Johnson avenues, behind Shields Elementary School.

Although the move was prompted by a construction/ renovation project at the complex, the new site is more open, offers additional parking, and is also adjacent to a playground. Organizers are hoping the playground may provide some additional appeal to young families, potential customers.

The HLFM also offers a children’s story/ activity hour each Saturday.

This market is open from 8 a.m. until noon and runs through Nov. 19

For more information, visit www. dda.delaware.gov  or www.historiclewesfarmersmarket.org.

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