Market Match is an incentive and bonus offered to CalFresh food stamp recipients. When a customer spends their CalFresh benefits at participating farmers’ markets and farm stands, they receive extra funds to buy fresh produce. Maximum Market Match offered per person per market location is $15, farm stands offer unlimited Match.
“This is the best thing ever. I only get $15/month but I spend it all here. You don’t have to be wealthy to eat well!” – Janet
The positive impact of Market Match is multi-dimensional and cumulative.
1. Market Match encourages low-income families to spend their CalFresh benefits at farmers’ markets where customers can purchase healthy and locally sourced foods. Farmers’ markets provide better quality and more nutrient-dense produce than larger grocers, offer less processed foods and support our local farming community.
2. Market Match stretches a food budget. CalFresh benefit allotments are not often reflective of the true cost of monthly groceries for a household. Market Match helps families get the most out of their benefits and is one of the few incentive programs in the state for CalFresh.
3. Market Match supports our farming families and stimulates our local economy. A USDA study showed that every $1 of benefits spent at a farmers’ market stimulates $1.79 in local economic activity.
4. The economic development potential is huge. By bringing more funds to our farmers’ markets, we help make them more sustainable. There is ample evidence that farmers’ markets have a positive economic impact on the community and businesses that surround them.
Facts and Figures:
Alchemist CDC facilitates the use of Market Match at 22 farmers’ markets and farm stands across Sacramento and Yolo counties. In 2019, Alchemist CDC’s Market Match program brought an extra $150,000+ in Market Match sales to local farmers, on top of the additional CalFresh and cash dollars spent by the new CalFresh customers. In 2019, Alchemist CDC has helped attract over 2,000 new CalFresh customers to take advantage of the Market Match Program and with many becoming repeat farmers market shoppers!
Alchemist CDC is administering Market Match in Sacramento and Yolo Counties in partnership with California Market Match Consortium and the Ecology Center, with funding from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Kaiser Permanente and contributions from individuals and farmers’ market operators.