Food Stamps: How to Use Your SNAP EBT at Farmers’ Markets

A cute boy is picking out vegetables with his mom at the farmers' market.
Aleksandar Jankovic / Getty Images

Most major grocery store chains and retailers accept EBT cards to purchase SNAP-eligible items, but you can also use your SNAP EBT at participating farmers’ markets to purchase fresh produce.

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SNAP provides food-purchasing assistance to low-income individuals and households. Benefits are deposited monthly into SNAP accounts linked to EBT cards, which work like credit or debit cards. Eligible items are typically food items that can be taken home and prepared for a meal, excluding food that is hot when sold or other prepared meals.

The Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is committed to providing access to sources of fresh fruits, vegetables and other healthy foods while supporting farmers and producers.

While not every farmers’ market accepts SNAP EBT, the FNS provides a monthly list of the names and locations of markets across the country that are currently authorized to accept SNAP benefits.

There are also SNAP-Ed programs that help support local agriculture by helping people use their SNAP benefits at local farmers’ markets while providing nutrition education in the market. SNAP-Ed also works with partners to help more markets accept EBT cards.

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According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, owners or managers of America’s Direct Marketing Farmers and Farmers’ Markets can apply online to accept SNAP. Program rules and requirements must be closely followed and all authorized SNAP retailers must use EBT equipment and transaction services.

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SNAP beneficiaries can make a purchase at a participating farmers’ market by swiping their EBT card at a point of sale terminal or by using the SNAP mobile application and entering their PIN.

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About the Author

Josephine Nesbit is a freelance writer specializing in real estate and personal finance. She grew up in New England but is now based out of Ohio where she attended The Ohio State University and lives with her two toddlers and fiancé. Her work has appeared in print and online publications such as Fox Business and Scotsman Guide.

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