Thanks to your continued support, on Wednesday, May 16th, Governor Ducey signed our Produce Incentive Program bill (Senate Bill 1245) into law! This bill will allow Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients to use their benefits to purchase more fruits and vegetables at locations that accept SNAP benefits. This will provide a dollar-for-dollar match from the federal government which will double the amount of accessible fresh, Arizona-grown fruits and vegetables.
Nearly 30 million people in neighborhoods across America have little or no access to healthy food like fruits and vegetables. Without much access to healthy foods, a nutritious diet and good health is unrealistic and can and has led to diet-related chronic diseases like heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Thankfully, SB 1245 will remove existing barriers and make a healthy diet more realistic for SNAP recipients.
SB 1245 will be beneficial for the health and economy of local neighborhoods. If implemented correctly, this bill can create jobs, and create new markets for farmers. We’ve seen this in Pennsylvania after they implemented The Penn Fresh Food Financing Initiative. After passage, 88 healthy food stores or farmers’ markets were established in under served rural or urban locations and created or retained about 5,000 jobs. We anticipate similar results in Arizona.
Thank you so much for your support throughout this campaign. We are very thankful to work on lifesaving legislation with dedicated advocates like you. If you want to get involved in similar campaigns, please email Josh Brown at your earliest convenience.