Double Value Coupon Program
Piloted through IPHI’s Community Transformation Grant (CTG) from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Double Value Coupon Program (DVCP) offered low-income families in Prince George’s County the opportunity to increase their spending power at participating farmers markets.
IPHI funded the Maryland Farmers Markets Association (MDFMA) to implement a Double Value Coupon Pilot Program to increase access to local fresh fruits and vegetables. This program worked by enabling county residents, particularly those using Supplemental Nutrition Program (SNAP) and Women, Infant and Children program (WIC) benefits, to increase their access to healthy food by doubling the value of their benefits. For example, for every $10.00 of SNAP spent on fresh fruit and produce at participating markets, the customers received a Maryland Money Market (MMM) coupon for $10.00 to purchase additional farmers’ market produce.
Crossroads Community Food Network, which was featured on NPR as a trailblazer in this arena, provided technical assistance on logistics of DVCP implementation, outreach and marketing materials, data collection/reporting mechanisms, and other needs that arose. Market managers at each market oversaw the logistics of the market (e.g., organizing vendors). CTG funds allowed the market managers to hire community coordinators to oversee the implementation and administration of the DVCP.
These partnerships produced a number of accomplishments during the CTG grant period, including:
- Redeemed over $7,500 in matching benefits to SNAP customers in locally-grown fruits and vegetables
- Trained four local farmers markets to accept SNAP benefits, a service that continued after the pilot phase and CTG grant period.