Why We Need Double Up
Too many families struggle to bring home the healthy food they need to thrive. Every year, many Nebraska residents use SNAP to help put food on the table.
We're working towards a Nebraska where everyone has greater access to fresh, nutritious fruits and vegetables.
Double Up Food Bucks Nebraska is coordinated by Nebraska Extension and the Nebraska Community Foundation. Over ten Nebraska serving organizations contribute to the success of the program. It matches EBT Card, or SNAP benefit, purchases on fruits and vegetables, up to $20 per day.
This means more healthy food for families, more business for local farmers, and a boost for local economies. Everyone wins.
Double Up Food Bucks:
- Brings fruits, vegetables and herbs within reach of everyone.
- Creates new markets for Nebraska farmers, which puts more money in their pockets and strengthens local economies.
- Increases families' food dollars and supports better nutrition while building a fairer food system—from farm to fork.
Double Up is a Win for Everyone
With Double Up, families who need it most get the support to buy twice as much fruits and veggies, whether fresh strawberries at farmers markets or Nebraska-grown potatoes at grocery stores.
And the cherry on top: these purchases support local farmers and create more vibrant local economies.
People and Families
Since 2017, Double Up was used to buy over $260,000 in fruits, vegetables and herbs. That's a lot of meals for a lot of people.
And more than 90% of those who used Double Up at farmers markets ate more fruits and vegetables, like apples, melons, cucumbers, and broccoli. We think that’s just peachy.
Of farmers who participated in Double Up, 90% sold more fruits and vegetables, and 85% made more money.
With greater sales, some farmers were able to expand their production and even buy or lease new equipment—giving a particular boost to farmers just starting out.
To support area businesses and strengthen communities, buying more local produce is low-hanging fruit.
One dollar spent at a farmers market can generate $2.80 for a community’s economy. If more food purchases in Nebraska were shifted to local sources, it is estimated this shift would create many new jobs.
A Model for America
Double Up was piloted in Detroit in 2009, and soon became a national model. Today, Double Up is offered in more 900 locations in dozens of states.
A little goes a long way. As food assistance is the largest single expenditure in the federal agriculture budget, redirecting even a small percentage toward locally grown food has enormous impact in local communities.
In 2017, Nebraska Extension launched Double Up as a pilot program at three farmers markets and one grocery store in Lincoln, Nebraska. Since then, Double Up has grown to 12 locations across eastern Nebraska.
Nebraskans can count on Nebraska Extension to connect with their families, businesses, and communities by being collaborative, outcome-focused, inclusive, research-based, responsive, innovative, and focused on local. Double Up is one of the ambitious ways it is helping communities harness the power of food.
In Nebraska, Double Up is operated by Nebraska Extension and the Nebraska Community Foundation, with major funding from USDA, Children's Hospital & Medical Center, and CHI Health. In addition to the generous support and hard work of our Double Up sites, this program receives guidance from Fair Food Network.