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State Budget Adds $2 Million to SNAP Program

By Staff

Assemblyman Demond Meeks. Photo from https://www.facebook.com/DemondLMeeks.

More funding is being provided to assist Rochester seniors and low-income families access fresh, nutritious and locally grown produce as part of the SNAP program.

Assemblyman Demond Meeks, Field & Fork Network and Foodlink recently announced a $2 Million addition to the Double Up Food Bucks (DUFB) NY program, operated through the Field & Fork Network and Foodlink.  This is the first time in the program’s history the funding is included in the New York State Budget.

The increased funding was supported State-Wide and will expand services to over 100,000 SNAP recipients with an expectation to have a positive impact for farmers, small businesses and local economies. 

“Accessibility to fresh and organic food is essential for the most vulnerable members of our community,” said Meeks. “As prices rise nationally and families struggle to make ends meet, it is important that we take necessary steps to prevent food insecurity and promote affordable, healthy options within our neighborhoods.” 

DUFB is a national nutrition incentive program operated by the Field & Fork Network, that matches SNAP eligible purchases $1 for $1, up to $20 per day, to purchase fruits and vegetables. The program has served 32,000+ SNAP households, across 29 counties, generating over $4.8 Million in healthy food sales, since 2014. The program’s benefits are three-fold: a win for New York farmers selling more produce; a win for low-income families putting more healthy food on their tables; and a win for local businesses and economies.

Meeks said the partnership with Foodlink is vital and will be a major benefit to low-income families in Rochester without access to healthier food options, living on limited budgets for groceries.

“I am glad that we were successful in securing funding for this important benefit to thousands of New Yorkers. Together, We Are Stronger,” he said.

Foodlink is dedicated to ending hunger and building healthier communities.  Foodlink’s Curbside Market trucks offer mobile vending, bringing the market to city neighborhoods.  The trucks can be found at various health clinics, community centers and senior centers and several affordable housing sites. 

They are stocked with fresh fruits, fresh vegetables and select grocery items. Curbside Market operates 6-days a week and is open to the public.  Purchases can be made with cash, FMNP (WIC and Senior) and eWIC. Specific locations can be found at www.foodlinkny.org/program/curbside-market.

“The Curbside Market has been a proud partner with the Field & Fork Network for more than 5 years and our loyal customers truly appreciate the value that Double of Food Bucks adds to the shopping experience,” Julia Tedesco, President & CEO of Foodlink said. 

Tedesco says the funding is critical and will allow the Curbside Market and other vendors to continue to expand access to healthy food, in the communities that need it the most.If you are in need of food assistance, find information about local food pantries, community meal programs and food distribution sites, visit www.foodlinkny.org.