Agriculture, Central New York, Community, Environment, Food, Health, Non-profit

A Local Farm has Solutions to Continue Access to Fresh Foods Amid Food Stamp Sales Shutdown

The entrance of Brady Farms gives a warm welcome to people in the community looking to purchase fresh foods. (c) 2018 Alexandria Bennett

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Audio Transcript: The Shutdown of Food Stamp Sales on Farmers Markets

By Alexandria Bennett SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) — Farmers markets will lose the ability to process food stamp sales on August 31st.

Novo Dia Group is a service provider that farmers markets use to process food stamp sales. The provider is going out of business, leaving farmers markets and local farmers to find solutions that will allow them to continue accepting food stamps.

Chuck McFadden, Market Manager at the Downtown Farmers Market said the ability to accept food stamps at farmers markets is a big help to the city of Syracuse.

“We’re pretty poverty stricken,” McFadden said. “Farmers markets have a lot of use of our EBT equipment and we want that to continue.”

Brady Farm is a farm that provides affordable, fresh, locally grown produce to the community. The farm also is a vendor at the CNY Regional Market and the Downtown Farmers Market.

Jessi Lyons, the farm coordinator at Brady Farm, submitted an application for a new service provider two days ago. The farm is working on finding news ways to continue supporting the community if they don’t get a new service provider.

“There are other programs like the farmers market coupons and the WIC program that we need to get too,” Lyons said. “We can at least accept those type of benefits so there are still ways we can support people who are low income.”

Lyons said with Syracuse having such a high concentration of poverty, many people use food stamps. The farm is currently accepting something different.

“We do receive donations,” Lyons said. “We want to specifically provide produce for families in need.”

The farm’s mission is to provide food access the community wants to eat, and is healthy as possible. They will continue to accept donations and hope to have a new service provider to accept food stamps within the next few months.

To keep up with what happens with food stamp sales impacting farmers and farmers markets, click here for live updates.