market bucks

about market bucks

Market Bucks and Harvest Bucks will combine our current Healthy Food Incentive buy-in and match program with our regular and one-off voucher programs (except for senior vouchers and SNAP/VFM, which will continue as separate incentive programs). The primary goal of Harvest Bucks and Market Bucks is to provide more affordable food to community members who don't fall within the federal aid programs that have strict eligibility requirements, but still lack access to local food. The secondary goal is to consolidate all of our non-VFM and non-senior incentive programs into one pot of funding. The hope is that rebranding will also make them more marketable.

Definitions:
Market Bucks-$1 tokens (previously our HFI tokens) eligible to be spent at any LEAP market for all SNAP eligible food items. 

Harvest Bucks- $1 tokens (previously our HFI match tokens) to be spent on only fresh fruits and vegetables at any LEAP market.  

Vouchers- Paper vouchers in $5, $10, or $15 increments that community partners distribute to their clients they identify as in need to be redeemed for Market/Harvest Bucks at LEAP markets. Community partners can choose whether they want to restrict purchases to produce only (Harvest Bucks) or any SNAP-eligible food (Market Bucks). Vouchers will be labeled with community partners' names to allow for tracking redemption. 

How it works for:
Community partners--Contact Kelly Key (kelly@leapforlocalfood.org, 540-492-5311, to place an order for vouchers or to discuss LEAP being a partner on your grant applications. Voucher types: You can choose Market Bucks that can be spent on any SNAP-eligible item, or Harvest Bucks that are restricted to produce only. LEAP will invoice you monthly for the amount of vouchers that are redeemed for Market/Harvest Bucks at the Market Manager table. LEAP will provide you with vouchers in $5, $10, or $15 increments that will be labeled with your organization’s name. Once your vouchers are delivered/picked up, you can distribute vouchers to your clients at your discretion. Vouchers will include information about where and how clients redeem the Harvest Bucks and Market Bucks vouchers. Please contact Connie Kenny (connie@leapforlocalfood.org) if you are interested in discussing the potential of our Mobile Market visiting your site for special events or regularly scheduled visits. (Minimum voucher purchase for special stop?)

Have conversation with community partners around how to best leverage their funding. Proposing options such as “donating” to our incentive fund to cover any late redemptions or over redemptions in order to maximize funding without knowing the exact redemption rate to expect. Or including an expiration date and then distributing another round of coupons after first expiration date based on redemption number to date.

Market Manager--Accept voucher and ask if it’s their first time shopping at market/if they are familiar with our incentive programs. Offer market tours, suggestions for vendors/products, and incentive/market literature. Check whether the voucher has an expiration date and if it is to be redeemed for Market Bucks or Harvest Bucks and let the customer know what their Bucks are eligible for. Hand customers the appropriate amount of Market/Harvest Bucks.Write down the number of Market Bucks (MB) or Harvest Bucks (HB) distributed on paper tracking sheet. Keep all vouchers in cash box.When inputting the Market Manager Report for each vendor at the end of market, input Market Bucks  total under “Market Bucks” and Harvest Bucks total under “Harvest Bucks.”Input Market Manager reports for each community partner under “Market Bucks Partner” Market. Select each community organization that had coupons redeemed and input them just like you would as a market vendor. When inputting the Markets Report, input total Market Bucks, both buy-in and vouchers,  distributed under “Market Bucks” and input total Harvest Bucks, both matching and vouchers, distributed under “Harvest Bucks” regardless of community partners on each coupon.

Customers--Participating Community Partners will give vouchers to their clients for free Market/Harvest Bucks. Bring the voucher to the market manager at any LEAP Market (West End Farmers Market, Grandin Village Farmers Market, LEAP Mobile Market). Receive $1 Market Bucks/Harvest Bucks in exchange for the value of your voucher to spend at vendor booths, or in the case of the Mobile Market, you will just spend the amount of your voucher with the Market Manager. Check your Coupon or Market/Harvest Bucks to know if it can be spent on all SNAP-eligible food items, or produce only. No change is given for Market/Harvest Bucks. Anyone with Medicaid, WIC, or a child in head start are eligible to purchase Market Bucks at the market manager table. You will receive an equivalent amount of Harvest Bucks for free to spend on fresh fruits and vegetables.

Your support grows healthy communities