HMH Receives 3 Million Grant to Make Fresh Produce More Accessible to Families in Need   
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HMH Receives 3 Million Grant to Make Fresh Produce More Accessible to Families in Need

What You Need To Know

HMH is launching a new program called Fresh Match this fall that will make fresh produce more accessible to families in need. On October 11, Bob Garret joined New Jersey Department of Human Services Commissioner Sarah Adelman, Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin, Assemblywoman Yvonne Lopez, grocery retailers, regional fruit and vegetable producers, and community partners at the Raritan Bay Area YMCA in Perth Amboy to celebrate the health system receiving a $3 million grant from the State of New Jersey. The health system is partnering with grocery retailers in seven counties to expand New Jersey’s Nutrition Incentive Program. According to the CDC, only 1 in 10 Americans are eating the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables, with even greater disparities among low income Americans. Cost is one of the primary barriers to consuming these healthy foods for families in need.  Under the Fresh Match program, families receiving New Jersey’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits can go into a participating grocery store and receive a dollar-for-dollar match to buy fresh produce. For example, if an individual using their SNAP Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card buys $10 or less worth of fruits and vegetables at a participating grocery store, they will receive a dollar for dollar match for up to $10 toward buying more fresh produce during their next visit. Hackensack Meridian Health will be partnering with grocery stores and community partners to reach SNAP households in areas that face food insecurity. The grant is from the State of New Jersey, which aims to increase food and nutrition security among low income communities while also providing a boost to local economies. The funding is enabling Hackensack Meridian Health to develop and launch Fresh Match, providing financial incentives to families in need to purchase fresh fruit and vegetables. New Jersey legislators were instrumental in helping to secure the grant. According to the USDA, prices for fresh fruits and vegetables have increased, making this program even more critical for low income families. The food and nutrition program is part of the network’s groundbreaking social determinants of health program, Healthy Connections. Addressing social determinants of health is not only important for improving overall health, but also for reducing health disparities that are often rooted in social and economic disadvantages. Research shows that health outcomes are driven by many factors beyond healthcare, including socio-economic factors, health behaviors and underlying genetics. Fresh Match will be rolling out to 13 grocery stores across seven counties in New Jersey throughout the fall. The participating grocery stores include:
  • ShopRite of Watchung
  • ShopRite of South Plainfield
  • ShopRite of Perth Amboy
  • ShopRite of Lodi
  • ShopRite of Passaic
  • ShopRite of Hackensack
  • ShopRite of Shrewsbury
  • ShopRite of Carteret
  • ShopRite of Bricktown
  • ShopRite of Neptune
  • Supremo of Plainfield
  • Supremo of Perth Amboy
  • C-Town of Perth Amboy
For more information about SNAP, visit
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