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HDFFA’s program for SNAP/EBT recipients serves 36 families and individuals, distributes $12K to area farmers

High Desert Food & Farm Alliance

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- The High Desert Food & Farm Alliance has partnered with local farmers and the Pacific Northwest CSA Coalition to launch a new Supported CSA Program.

A Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program is one in which an individual pays a farm for a membership that entitles them to a “share” of the farm’s harvest —commonly a set quantity of fresh foods made available to the member for pickup on a weekly basis. This has become a popular way to buy tasty, seasonal fruit and vegetables, directly from the farmer.

Developed this year to provide lower-income individuals and families the opportunity to gain better, consistent access to fresh, local produce, the program will reach at least 36 families or individuals. The cost is paid for by three sources: SNAP,  Double Up Food Bucks (a program that doubles your SNAP), and by HDFFA, for up to a 75% discount.

HDFFA conducted outreach throughout the spring, and farmers shared information with their audience and customers directly. This amounts to over $12,000 in funds from HDFFA offset for program participants and distributed directly to 8 different farms. Participating farms are located in Bend, Redmond, Sisters, and Prineville, serving members of their respective communities.

"As small farmers we are very excited to have a way to make our food more accessible … Since we started our farm 10 years ago, we have been trying to find the best way to support low-income families in getting fresh, nutrient-dense food. Every human has a right to quality food," said Carys Wilkins and Benji Nagel, of Mahonia Gardens in Sisters.

Program participants will receive a weekly or bi-weekly box of fresh produce throughout the summer, as well as nutrition information, recipes, and pickup support if needed. CSA share size, pickup times and locations, duration, and cost all vary, and HDFFA offered  participants  guidance on the best share for their needs. 

For more information on the program, please visit hdffa.org/snapcsa.

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