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Food Basket & KTA Partner for DA BUX Rollout

September 20, 2017, 12:39 PM HST (Updated September 20, 2017, 12:39 PM)
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Hawai`i Island’s Food Bank will unveil its DA BUX – Double Up Food Bucks – program at KTA Super Stores’ Hilo locations on Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017.

DA BUX is an incentive program for SNAP – EBT cardholders that doubles the purchase of Hawai‘i Island-grown produce while supporting local farmers through an incentivized dollar-for-dollar match.

The Food Basket’s DA BUX program is supported by a $500,000 United States Department of Agriculture Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive grant.

“DA BUX is not simply free food,” said Chelsea Takahashi, DA BUX coordinator. “It is a driver for economic development for our island. I believe infusing hundreds of thousands of dollars directly into our island’s agriculture industry can make a difference in terms of sustaining and growing small farm revenue. It also ensures more of our federal money stays circulating in our local economy.”

SNAP customers at KTA Super Stores’ Puainako and downtown Hilo locations can purchase up to $20 in participating Hawai‘i Island grown produce and receive an equivalent amount of participating produce for free through an at-register rebate.

The program will run at these KTA Super Stores locations for one week a month in 2017, beginning on the third Wednesday: September 20-26, October 18-24, November 15-21, and December 20-26.

Beyond the KTA Super Stores Puainako and downtown Hilo pilot, The Food Basket has implemented DA BUX with its own community supported agriculture program, DA BOX, providing SNAP customers with a buy one, get one free weekly subscription. Customers may purchase a four-week month of boxes for the payment of two weeks.

The DA BUX incentive is available at The Food Basket in 2017 through Dec. 22, 2017.

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Through the support of Hawai‘i County Councilmembers Eileen O`hara, Jen Ruggles, Maile David and Dru Kanuha, DA BUX has rolled out at Maku‘u Farmers Market, Volcano Farmers Market, Keauhou Farmers Market and Kona Sunset Farmers Market.

Each farmers market is limited to $10 in matching dollars and is implemented based on the market’s SNAP payment system. Check with your local participating farmers market’s cashier office for more information.

Maku‘u Farmers Market and Volcano Farmers Market will implement the DA BUX incentive on the third Sunday of the month for 2017: Oct. 15, Nov. 19 and Dec.17.

The DA BUX incentive is available at Kona Sunset Farmers Market on the third Wednesday of the month for 2017: Sept. 20, Oct. 18, Nov. 15 and Dec. 20.

At the Keauhou Farmers Market, the DA BUX incentive will take place on the third Saturday of the month for 2017: Oct. 21, Nov. 18 and Dec. 16.

2018 DA BUX incentive offerings are to be determined.

For more information on DA BUX, visit HawaiiFoodBasket.org.

For more information about DA BOX and SNAP sign-ups, contact Haunani at (808) 933-6030.

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