The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) run under the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service is the largest program aimed at addressing food access and hunger in the country. Since the conversion of benefit provision from physical "stamps" to Electronic Benefit Transfer cards (EBT cards), tracking and administering of benefits has become more efficient, but the change has also placed limits on farmers’ and farmers markets’ ability to accept these benefits as payment in exchange for affordable and nutritious food products. Within the past few decades, the federal government, states, cities, and farmers markets across the country themselves have been implementing and improving programs to facilitate EBT transactions while simultaneously attempting to spread awareness of such initiatives and the benefits of farmers markets to SNAP customers. The Rochester Public Market serves as a national example of SNAP benefit acceptance at farmers markets, accepting over half of a million dollars in SNAP benefits annually and 3.2% of the SNAP benefits spent at farmers market nationwide in 2015. This disproportionately high rate of SNAP benefit acceptance begs the question, what factors influence these rates and what can other markets do to increase utilization rates of SNAP acceptance programs at their market as well?

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Farmers' markets--New York (State)--Rochester--Case studies; Farmers' markets--Economic aspects--New York (State)--Rochester; Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (U.S.)

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Science, Technology and Public Policy (MS)

Department, Program, or Center

Public Policy (CLA)


Ann Howard

Advisor/Committee Member

Jane Amstey

Advisor/Committee Member

Margaret O'Neill


Physical copy available from RIT's Wallace Library at HD9000.5 .H69 2017


RIT – Main Campus

Plan Codes