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Utah economy

Farmers’ markets strengthen the local economy, a sense of community; Double Up program helps SNAP beneficiaries – St George News

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Farmers’ Market in St George, Utah, date unspecified | Photo courtesy of Kat Puzey, St George News / Cedar City News

FUNCTIONALITY – Have you shopped at your local farmer’s market? Otherwise, you are missing out! There is nothing like the taste of fresh, locally grown produce.

Juicy tomatoes, perfectly ripe peaches, and fragrant fresh herbs aren’t the only perk of shopping at farmers’ markets. Your family and community reap even more benefits, including:

  • Supporting local producers helps strengthen the local economy by preserving farms and small ranches and creating jobs.
  • Locally produced foods are often of better quality and freshness because they don’t travel long distances before reaching your table.
  • There is a sense of community at your farmers market! Get to know your local producers and their business. Find out what products they offer and what motivates them.
  • Farmers’ markets are just plain fun! Many offer a variety of local produce beyond produce, such as flowers, handmade crafts, herbs, and body care products.

In addition to the benefits listed above, many farmers markets also accept SNAP EBT Advantages. Here is how it works:

Step 1 – Bring your SNAP EBT Horizon card to an information booth at a participating farmers market or farm stand before shopping.

Step 2 – Decide how much money you want to spend. The stand attendant will swipe your card for the requested amount and give you wooden tokens worth $ 1 each which you can use to purchase food from vendors in the market. You can use the tokens immediately or keep them for another day.

Not all markets accept SNAP EBT benefits, so it is important to check with the market before you go. You can find more information and a list of participating markets in by clicking here.

Another great benefit of shopping at farmers markets is the Double Up Food Bucks program. See the flyers below for more information.

Flyer courtesy of USU Extension Create Better Health Blog, St. George News | Click to enlarge
Flyer courtesy of USU Extension Create Better Health Blog, St. George News | Click to enlarge

With all of these fresh produce in your hands, you’ll need some delicious recipes. Click here to download our free Farmers Market cookbook.

One of my favorite recipes from the book is Lemon Roasted Asparagus. The full recipe can be found on this extension USU Create Better Health blog post.

Written by CANDI MERRITT, Certified Nutrition Education Ambassador.

This article was originally published on April 28, 2021 on the USU extension Create a blog for better health.

Copyright © CreateBetterHealth.org, all rights reserved.

Mary Cashion

The author Mary Cashion