Bills Foundation helps launch this healthy food program in Niagara Falls

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Today, Field & Fork Network announced the launch of Double Up Food Bucks NY at the Niagara Falls City Market. The program increases access to local fresh produce, helps families with SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) formerly food stamps stretch their food budgets, and invests in New York farmers.

"Niagara Falls is a community that our organization is deeply committed to bringing SNAP and Double Up Food Bucks to the Niagara Falls City Market. This project was several years in the making and the number one priority of the Niagara Falls Local Food Action Plan. We are thankful to our dedicated group of partners, farmers, and residents who helped us get to this point," said Tom Lowe, Project Director at Field & Fork Network.

How it works:

Double Up Food Bucks is a nutrition incentive program funded by New York State, the USDA's Nutrition Institute on Food and Agriculture and private foundations that offers individuals and families with SNAP a $1 for $1 match, on all their purchases at the Market, up to $20 per day. Double Up Food Bucks can then be used to purchase local fresh fruits and vegetables. Double Up provides multiple benefits: it's a win for local farmers selling more produce; a win for low-income families putting more healthy food on their tables; and a win for area businesses as more food dollars circulate in the local economy.

Double Up Food Bucks success is fueled by partners, like the Buffalo Bills, who help bring the program to life in their communities. Without public and private partnerships, the program could not reach the individuals and families who need it most.

CB Siran Neal and Billy Buffalo attended a Kids Day event celebrating the launch of the Double Up Food Bucks program in Niagara Falls.

Quotes from our partners:

"The Buffalo Bills Foundation is pleased to partner with the Field and Fork Network again this year and support the Double Up Food Bucks program with a $25,000 grant," said Michelle Roberts, Executive Director of the Buffalo Bills Foundation. "It is our hope that residents in Niagara Falls and throughout WNY that qualify for SNAP benefits register and participate in the Double Up Food Bucks program to stretch their food budget and access healthy, local produce while supporting local farmers."

"Delivering access to affordable and healthy food has been an ongoing issue for countless communities across New York State, especially in our city centers. By joining forces, Niagara Falls City Market, the Field &Fork Network, and the Buffalo Bills Foundation are helping residents in these communities access an incredible selection of healthy and delicious fruits and vegetables -much of which is grown by farmers right here in Western New York. This is a wonderful collaboration, and I applaud all the partners involved in making this possible," said Senator Robert Ortt.

"Thanks to the Double Up Food Bucks program, now Niagara Falls residents can receive a dollar-for-dollar match on fruit & vegetable purchases. That means much more healthy food for the family. I would like to thank the Niagara Falls Local Food Action Plan, the City of Niagara Falls, and the City Market for their outstanding teamwork to bring this program to our community."

- Assemblyman Angelo Morinello

"With the launch of the Double Up Food Bucks program at the Niagara Falls City Market, our families and neighbors will have immediate and affordable access to healthy, fresh food," said Niagara Falls Mayor Robert Restaino. "This collaboration will be instrumental in ensuring all members of our community have the opportunity to purchase nutritious, locally produced food right in their neighborhood.

"Being able to eat well is a key factor to improving heart and brain health, and we are seeing now more than ever how critical good health is," said Jason Stulb, executive director of the American Heart Association in the Buffalo/Niagara region. "We've been advocating for funding for Double Up Food Bucks at the local and state level so that more people can have access to even more healthy food. We're proud to work with Field and Fork Network as they implement programs across the state, and are glad to see that the Niagara Falls City Market is now accepting Double Up Food Bucks."

The Niagara Falls City Market is open to the public from 8 am - 3 pm, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. SNAP & Double Up Food Bucks are accepted 10 am - 2 pm.For a complete list of participating Double Up sites and hours of operation, visit www.doubleupnys.com/locations.

About Double Up Food Bucks

Double Up Food Bucks is a nationwide nutrition incentive model, administered by Field & Fork Network, servicing millions of low-income SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) users with a dollar-for-dollar match to increase affordability and access to fresh healthy foods at farmers markets, CSAs, farm stands, mobile markets, and grocery stores. In New York State, Double Up has contributed to 4.9 million pounds of healthy food sales to over 38,000 customers, at more than 180 sites spanning 29 counties. To learn more about Double Up Food Bucks and a complete list of participating sites, please visit the program website and social media sites, or call 1-800-682-5016. www.doubleupnys.com

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