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Double Up Food Bucks Receives Support from New York State

$2 Million allocated in 2023 Budget for healthy food incentive program

 Field & Fork Network and the American Heart Association are pleased to announce, for the first time in the program’s history, its inclusion in the New York State Budget. Double Up Food Bucks NY received bipartisan support for the $2 Million allocation; this funding will allow the statewide program to expand services to approximately 100,000 SNAP recipients and an opportunity to leverage an additional $2Million in federal funding, going directly to New York farmers, small businesses, and local economies.

Double Up Food Bucks (DUFB) is a national nutrition incentive program operated by the Field & Fork Network, that matches SNAP eligible purchases $1 for $1, up to $20 per day, to purchase local fruits and vegetables. This state funding is an investment in health because it makes fresh produce more accessible. It’s an investment in farmers because they can sell more of the goods they grow. And it’s an investment in families so they, and their communities, can thrive. Since 2014, DUFB NY has served over 32,000 SNAP households, across 29 countries, generating over $4.8 Million in healthy food sales.

“We’re thankful for the state’s support and lucky to have lawmakers who champion innovative ways to make a real difference for people in their districts,” said Lisa French, Executive Director of Field & Fork Network. “The state funding will allow us to bring an additional $4M into the state, expand into underserved communities and operate in more year-round locations.”

“The American Heart Association has been proud to assist Field & Fork Network with new locations, community outreach and education,” said Brianna Durkee, New York State Government Relations Director for the American Heart Association. ‘This program will help reduce nutrition insecurity and disparities in finding healthy food across the state. We are grateful to all the participants in the program and are glad that Gov. Hochul and state legislators are making this investment in the health of all New Yorkers.”

Since 2014, Double Up Food Bucks NY has been supported by federal funding through the USDA’s Gus Schumacher Nutrition Incentive Program, with an equal match coming from corporate and private funders across the state. Over the last two years, as a result of the COVID 19 pandemic, program participation skyrocketed. Supply chains were strained, food costs increased, and food insecurity reached an all-time high. Double Up became a necessary resource to help people stretch their food budget. To meet the needs of New Yorkers, state support was required.

“I was proud to be part of the bi-partisan effort to champion Double Up Food Bucks NY in the state budget. This state support will leverage $2 million in federal funding so SNAP recipients can purchase healthy food and boost local economies. As Ranking Member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, I am always looking for opportunities to put local produce on the tables of New Yorkers. Double Up Food Bucks does that. It ensures families in need have access to fresh, locally grown fruit and vegetables while supporting our farmers and small businesses,” said Sen. George M. Borrello, 57th Senate District

Senator Michelle Hinchey said, “As the Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee, I was proud to work with my colleagues to champion statewide funding for Double Up Food Bucks in this year’s budget – an impactful program that helps SNAP-eligible families stretch their dollar further towards the purchase of fresh fruits and vegetables. This program not only lessens barriers to healthy food access but keeps food dollars local and supports the small New York farms responsible for growing the high-quality produce that every New Yorker deserves.”

“Local and organic food options are an important resource for preventing food insecurity amongst vulnerable members of our community. It is essential that those in need of support have access to affordable options for healthy and nutritious food in their neighborhoods. These investments will ensure that we provide for our low-income residents while also delivering direct support to small businesses, farmers, and the local economy. I am glad that we were successful in securing funding for this important benefit to thousands of New Yorkers. I want to thank the Field & Fork Network and my state colleagues for demonstrating their support for underserved communities, together we are making a difference throughout New York State.” -Assemblymember Demond Meeks

Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Commissioner Daniel W. Tietz said, “Access to fresh, healthy, and nutritious food is vital for some of our most vulnerable fellow New Yorkers. Double Up Food Bucks NY incentivizes such purchases from New York farmers by doubling the purchasing power of SNAP benefits at select locations. We are excited to be working with Field & Fork Network on this effort and look forward to helping this important program grow to serve more SNAP households.”

“Double Up Food Bucks has been a unifier from the start,” said Lisa French, Executive Director, Field & Fork Network. “It brings together farmers and families. It brings together communities. And as we’ve seen again this year, it brings together legislators from both sides of the aisle. We look forward to continuing and deepening our partnership with the state.”