Accepting Bridge Cards at Michigan Farmers Markets

Accepting Bridge Cards at Michigan Farmers Markets

Accepting Bridge Cards at Michigan Farmers Markets

The federal food assistance program called Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) distributes benefits electronically on plastic cards that work like debit cards. When a shopper uses the card to purchase food, funds are transferred from the shopper’s SNAP account to the retailer’s account. Because Michigan’s EBT card features an image of the Mackinac Bridge, the card is commonly called the Bridge card. In Michigan, the Department of Human Services (DHS) administers SNAP and refers to it as the Food Assistance Program (FAP).

The third edition of the "Accepting Bridge Cards at Michigan Farmers Markets" resource manual will help farmers markets decide if they should accept food assistance benefits. If they decide to become an authorized SNAP retailer, it will help implement this food assistance program.

This guide is divided into sections. The first section explains the steps taken to develop a SNAP redemption program at the farmers market. The remainder of the manual is devoted to topics relevant to the maintenance and improvement of SNAP programs, such as working with vendors, covering the costs associated with the program, record-keeping, working with volunteers, and promotion and outreach. 

Want more information? See the related SARE grant(s) GNC08-097, Sustaining Farmers Markets that Serve Low-Income Consumers .

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This material is based upon work that is supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture through the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.

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