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LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas farmers’ market managers and farmers using direct marketing
retail methods have an opportunity to apply for a grant to purchase point-of-sale
equipment Wednesday, Feb. 11. The equipment makes it possible to expand client bases
by accepting electronic benefit transfer cards, or EBTs.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture will be in Little Rock to help sign up farmers
and market managers, and to help speed approval of applications for the grant. Sign-up day runs from 1
p.m.-5 p.m. in the auditorium of the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension
Service office at 2301 S. University Ave. in Little Rock.
“Arkansas farmers and market managers can get a Supplemental Nutrition Assistance
Program retailer number in just one day instead of the usual 45-60 days,” said Rosemary
Rodibaugh, professor with the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture.
Grant money is available to purchase the point-of-sale equipment needed to accept
electronic cards used in SNAP, formerly known as the Food Stamp program. These funds
are for farmers’ markets and direct marketing farmers who are not currently participating
in SNAP. Those vendors interested in applying for the grant must first be approved
to accept SNAP EBT payments. The grant covers the cost of a point-of-sale device,
start-up fees, and the monthly connectivity fee for one year, up to $1,000 per farmer
Out of approximately 269 direct-marketing farmers and farmers’ markets in Arkansas,
only about 30 currently accept EBT cards. The cards allow purchasers to use their
SNAP benefits to buy fresh fruit, vegetables, and food-producing plants and seeds
at a market or from a farmer.
The ability of markets and farmers to accept SNAP benefits is a win-win opportunity
for both these businesses and SNAP recipients.
“We would like to see every farmers’ market and direct-marketing farmer in Arkansas
accept SNAP benefits. It is a good way for SNAP recipients to eat fresh, locally-grown
food and provide a boost in income to these businesses all over the state,” said Michele
Rodgers, Department of Human Services SNAP outreach manager.
To streamline the process, interested farmers or market managers should bring the
following on Sign-Up Day:
For more information about the grant opportunity please contact Michele Rodgers with
the Arkansas Department of Human Services at 501-682-8288.
The Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative
action institution. If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate or need
materials in another format, please contact your County Extension office (or other
appropriate office) as soon as possible. Dial 711 for Arkansas Relay.
The Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to all eligible persons
regardless of race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin,
religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any
other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.
# # #
By The Cooperative Extension ServiceU of A System Division of Agriculture
Media Contact: Ryan McGeeneyContent Specialist U of A Division of AgricultureCooperative Extension Service(501) email@example.com