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SNAP and Farmers Markets


Why shop at a farmers market?

  • Fresh, healthy produce tastes better.
  • Fresh produce is healthier - it hasn't lost nutritional value during transport.
  • Fresh produce lasts much longer than store bought produce.
  • You'll gain access to a wider choice of products.
  • You'll save money with no middleman: SNAP participants can also get double with Virginia Fresh Match (VFM).
  • You'll support your local farmers and local economy.
  • Farmers markets often offer a variety of family- and community-oriented activities.
virginia fresh match


Double your money with Virginia Fresh Match

Look for farmers markets that offer "Virginia Fresh Match," which provides a "match" to the amount of SNAP benefits a participant spends at the market.

  • Participating Virginia Fresh Match markets
  • Find nearly 100 participating farmers, mobile markets and neighborhood grocery stores throughout VA.
  • Use SNAP at these participating farmers, mobile markets and neighborhood grocery stores to buy fresh fruits, vegetables, seeds and plants.
  • Add convenience to your life, as much of the fresh fruits and vegetables sold at farmers markets can be eaten raw, with no cooking needed.
  • You'll discover that while many farmers markets are seasonal, but some are open year-round.

Using SNAP at farmers markets is easy

  • Bring your EBT card to the market office or information table - market staff are there to help.
  • Choose the amount to charge to your card, then swipe and enter your PIN, just like at the grocery store.
  • You'll receive tokens or vouchers worth DOUBLE the value charged to your EBT card. For example, swipe your EBT card for $10, get $20 worth of tokens.
  • Then, spend your tokens like cash with market vendors on eligible products.
  • Vendors can't give change for tokens, so work with vendors to make whole-dollar-amount purchases.
  • If you don't spend all your tokens, hang on to them and spend them the next time you visit the farmers market.
  • For more information about SNAP click here.

Other resources about farmers markets

VA Family Nutrition Program (SNAP Ed):

Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS)

Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services (DARS) - WIC FM and Senior Farmers Market Program (S/FMP)

Virginia Black Farmer Directory

Resources for farmers markets and direct marketing farmers

To become eligible to accept SNAP:

  • Whether you are a farmers market or direct marketing farmer, you will need to apply for authorization to accept SNAP
  • Once you receive approval you, will receive your Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) number

To receive a free wireless point of sale (POS) device, complete this form or email the information requested on the form to after approved to accept SNAP.

VA Farmers Market Association - association of farmers markets across VA that provides resources for member and non-member markets. Notable is their Market Manager Certification training which provides training on all aspects of farmers markets including accepting SNAP at the market.

Local Food Hub - an organization that advances equitable access to fresh food, independent farms, and fairness in farming.

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Virginia Department of Social Services
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