Norwood Market to Use iPhone App to Accept Federal Food Benefits - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Norwood Market to Use iPhone App to Accept Federal Food Benefits

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Federal nutrition benefit recipients will be able to swipe their cards through an iPhone to buy local fruits and vegetables at the Norwood Market at the Trolley Stop. The new iPhone-based application called Mobile Market+ allows farmers market customers to use SNAP benefits to purchase fresh and healthy food.

The USDA granted funds to Alabama Department of Human Resources for devices and service fees for farmers markets to accept SNAP. Through its Urban Food Project, ONB/Main Street Birmingham and the Alabama Farmers Market Authority helped DHR identify eligible markets and assisted markets in the application process.

"On-site wireless payment systems have been one of the great hurdles to connecting food benefit recipients with farmers at outdoor markets. This software eliminates the need for costly and cumbersome machines, putting the technology on a device we all carry with us anyway," said Taylor Clark, market coordinator for ONB/Main Street Birmingham's Urban Food Project.
The Norwood Market at the Trolley stop, a project of the Norwood Resource Center, operates Saturdays 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. through October 27. The market is located at the corner of Norwood Blvd. and 32nd street in the Norwood neighborhood in Birmingham.

Market customers will be able to purchase vouchers, called Market Bucks, at the information station near the market entrance, then redeem at individual food vendors within the market. Main Street Birmingham supports implementation of the SNAP acceptance programs for markets through the Birmingham Market Alliance, an initiative of Main Street Birmingham's Urban Food Project.

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