Virginia’s food stamp recipients to get credit cards for farmers’ markets
Food Stamp recipients will soon be eligible for a special credit card that can be used at participating farmers markets across Virginia. Charles Fishburne reports.
They aren’t called food stamps anymore, but Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programs, or SNAP. And as the recession swells the numbers of Virginians who need them, there is a program to make farmers' markets more accessible.
Steinhouser: They will get a point-of-sale device that will process SNAP debit card transactions.
Tom Steinhouser, Department of Social Services.
Steinhouser: Obviously, it will help our clients who, up to this point, have not had access to fresh fruits and vegetables from farmers' markets, and I think it will also help the farmers' markets because they will be able to expand their base of customers.
Social Services is partnering with the Virginia Department of Agriculture to make the card-readers free to eligible farmers' markets, and the cards themselves will be sent to the state's some 880 thousand recipients. Those numbers grew by 24% in 2010, and almost one of every seven Virginians received SNAP benefits at some point during the past year.
Charles Fishburne, WCVE News