The Family Nutrition Program’s goal is to increase access to fruits and vegetables for all Virginians. A major part of this work is our partnerships with farmers markets that accept SNAP. We offer several types of support and resources for markets looking to start to accept SNAP, or looking to increase the number of SNAP sales at their market. Here are some farmers market manager resources you can use.
Starting your EBT program
Is your market looking to start accepting SNAP, but you’re not sure what the first step is? We have written a manual on how to run a SNAP/EBT program at your market, including how to apply for an FNS number, how to get an EBT machine, and details on reimbursing vendors.
We have created a tool box of resources for markets with new or beginning SNAP programs. This tool box has several sections including vendor training tools, grant writing tools, and free marketing templates. These marketing templates are designed for use by markets that do not have the budget to make their own postcards, banners or posters to advertise that they accept SNAP.
FNP has worked with the Virginia Farmers Market Association to create a Farmers Market Manager Certification program. Market management requires a wide range of skills to build and maintain a market that is profitable to farmers, creates a vibrant and diverse shopping experience to consumers, and engages with other community partners. The mostly online course is an interactive, engaging, student-centered learning experience around real world farmers market issues. Not only does the certification process legitimize the importance of farmers market managers as advocates of locally/regionally grown foods, but helps professionalize the role of “market manager.” FNP contributed by planning and managing the 2 year pilot of the training program and by addressing specific needs related to SNAP, including SNAP redemption and creating a positive welcoming environment for SNAP participants. VCE Specialists Dr. Martha Walker and Dr. Renee Boyer contributed their expertise by leading modules on Conflict Management, Market Rules and Policies and Food Safety at Farmers Markets. To learn more about registering for the next course, visit VAFMA.org.