Program providing access to healthy foods expands

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Double Up Food Bucks gives food stamp users a dollar back for every dollar they spend.

It’s typically been offered at farmers markets, but now the program is expanding to 50 grocery stores throughout the state.

This year, the program added 30 grocery stores.

Emilie Engelhard is the Communications Director at Fair Food Network, which runs the food bucks program.

“We continue to grow and innovate the program in Michigan to bring more healthy food to more families through more farmers in more locations. Double up was one of the first SNAP incentive programs in the country to expand from farmers markets to grocery stores and also to support mobile payment technology. So we’ve really been committed to innovating here in Michigan.”

Engelhard said Double Up Food Bucks is good for everybody involved.

“It’s been you know it’s a great program and I think it just really speaks to the fact that it’s just a win win win. Helping more Americans buy fresh healthy food from local farmers is a simple yet powerful idea. While the economy is still improving, many Americans still need support as they get back on their feet.”

Engelhard said more than eight million dollars from Double Up Food Bucks has gone back to Michigan farmers.