Food Access & Affordability

AARP Foundation Fresh Savings and Memphis Tilth

Memphis Tilth  oversees the Food Access and Affordability Program, through the AARP Fresh Savings project in partnership with the Wholesome Wave Foundation.

Double Green$ was initiated in 2011, to enhance access to fresh, locally grown produce in low-income food insecure communities by providing a dollar- for-dollar match for SNAP/EBT dollars (formerly known as “food stamps”) at Memphis Area Farmers Markets. SNAP recipients that use their SNAP EBT cards at local farmer’s markets have their benefits matched up to $10 per customer per week. Not only does this make fresh, healthy produce more affordable for low-income Memphians, but it also builds the capacity of farmers in the Mid-South to continue to produce healthy, fresh food for our region. In 2011, this program began at two local farmer’s markets, the Cooper Young Community Farmers Market and the South Memphis Farmers Market, and has since expanded to the Church Health Center/MIFA Farmers Market, Overton Park Community Farmers Market, and the Memphis Farmers Market.

Beginning with a modest return of $3,000 spent on doubling incentives, the program provided nearly $10,000 worth of benefits in 2013 and 2014. In 2015, GrowMemphis and the Double Green$ program partnered with the AARP Foundation and Wholesome Wave Foundation as a sub-grantee for the Fresh Savings Program, providing funding and resources through the federal FINI grant for farmer’s market nutrition incentives for SNAP/EBT participants.

AARP Foundation’s Fresh Savings project is a healthy eating incentive program funded by a grant from the United States Department of Agriculture and United Health Care. Fresh Savings tokens are good for the purchase of fresh fruits and vegetables available at four farmers markets in the city of Memphis and will double a shopper’s SNAP/EBT purchases, up to $20 per transaction.