Grantee Blog 2020

Good Food Bucks are Back!

The Garden State Good Food Network is very excited to announce that our 2021 season is up and running, with 20 partner retailers and our own market and Veggie Mobile. We have twice as many partner retailers as last year, which means twice as many markets doubling SNAP dollars for fresh produce spent with Families First cards, giving our SNAP shoppers access to healthy, farm-fresh produce! This also means that our New Jersey farmers will have twice as many opportunities to incentivize their fresh produce to SNAP customers, and earn extra income for their hard work that helps to sustain us all. The pandemic presented many challenges and obstacles to accessing farm fresh produce, but our partners have been working hard to meet the shifting needs of their communities!

This year we are partnering with 20 wonderful New Jersey Farmers Markets and Farm Stands:

Our training season is off to a great start in anticipation of the opening for the season slated for June 1st! We have held two training sessions for partners, preparing them to implement the Good Food Bucks program, including SNAP eligible items, EBT equipment, working with vendors and farmers, and data collection as well as ensuring that we are still following COVID-safety protocol. The New Jersey Department of Agriculture recently recommended that customers and retailers continue to wear masks at farmers markets to ensure that we are doing all we can to prevent the spread of COVID and to keep our communities as safe as possible.

We are also very pleased to announce the launch of the Members’ Home Page on the Garden State Good Food Network website. Here we have made available to our partner retailers helpful toolkits that equip them for the season with Program Guides and At-Market tools. We have created a forum that will allow our partner retailers to discuss best practices, ask questions, and share resources. We also have a file share that will act as a shared drive for all of our partner retailers. Finally, we have a data entry section to make our data entry process for partner retailers as accessible and straightforward as possible.

In the coming months we will be providing on-site support to partners and conducting statewide outreach on behalf of the Garden State Good Food Network. We invite all of you to come out and support our local farmers by purchasing farm-fresh produce at our Good Food Buck partner markets this season!

About the Grantee

City Green, Inc.

City Green is a 501(c)3 urban farming and gardening organization, based in Clifton, New Jersey working to revitalize New Jersey communities through agriculture, educational programming, and food access initiatives.