Iowans facing food insecurity have redeemed more than $1 million in fruits and vegetables at farmers markets and grocery stores using Double Up Food Bucks since it began as a pilot program in 2016, the Iowa Healthiest State Initiative announced. A total of $1,029,461 in Double Up Food Bucks has been redeemed as of Monday. The healthy food incentive program allows SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps) customers to match purchases made with their EBT card, up to $10 per day, with Double Up Food Bucks, which can be spent on fresh produce. "This is a huge milestone for Double Up Food Bucks in Iowa," said Jami Haberl, executive director of the Iowa Healthiest State Initiative, which administers the program. "The program has grown from six farmers markets in its first season to now more than 140 locations impacting thousands of families statewide." Double Up Food Bucks receives federal SNAP incentive funding, including a three-year grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The funds are then matched with private contributions.

Iowa Stops Hunger is a yearlong Business Publications Corp. initiative to bring awareness and action to food insecurity in Iowa. Read additional stories on Iowastopshunger.com.