Categorized | Business, Food

EBT card use at open markets provides access to fresh, healthy foods


As summer approaches, the Department of Human Services (DHS) reminds low-income individuals and families they can use their SNAP benefits at specific Farmers’ Markets and the City’s People’s Open Markets (POMs) to purchase fresh locally grown fruits and vegetables. SNAP beneficiaries also can purchase breads and cereals, meats, fish, poultry and dairy products at open markets, as well as seeds and plants that produce food that can be eaten.

Pineapples at Makuu Farmers Market in Puna. Hawaii 24/7 File Photo

Pineapples at Makuu Farmers Market in Puna. Hawaii 24/7 File Photo

SNAP is the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program formerly known as “food stamps.” SNAP recipients who use their SNAP Electronic Benefits Transfer cards (SNAP-EBT) at Farmers’ Markets and POMs gain additional access to affordable fresh produce.

“The City and County of Honolulu’s People’s Open Market is proud to announce the availability of EBT at various markets around Oahu,” said Sharon Tomita, Special Services Coordinator who oversees the People’s Open Market. “The City and County of Honolulu currently has four sites accepting EBT. On Tuesdays, we’re at Waipahu District Park and Wahiawa District Park; on Friday, at Ewa Beach Community Park and on Saturday, we’re at the Kalihi Street parking lot at (Kalakaua District Park).”

Hawaii participation in SNAP is currently at a historic high. An average of 94,649 households per month received SNAP benefits in FY 2013. An average of 187,062 individuals per month received SNAP; and the State of Hawaii issued an average of $484.9 million per year in SNAP benefits.

In February 2014, the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) awarded Hawaii a $724,134 bonus for the most improved SNAP Program Access Index (PAI) in the Unites States. The PAI Index measures the average number of number of low-income persons, at or below 125% of the federal poverty line, who receive SNAP benefits. In 2012, the PAI index ranked Hawaii as the 11th best performing state in the nation with participation rate of 88%.

In addition to ensuring that SNAP beneficiaries have access to fresh food, the ability to process EBT cards also benefits open market vendors and our local farmers. Every $5.00 in SNAP benefits generates $9.00 in community spending. The DHS EBT Office has been working with Farmers’ Markets to assist with the purchasing of EBT equipment and operating the devices.

To learn more about the Hawaii SNAP and EBT programs, visit the DHS website To apply for an EBT Point of Service call (808) 586-5739 or email

To learn more about the Honolulu People’s Open Market (POM) Program, visit To learn more about EBT use at Farmers’ Markets visit the US Food and Nutrition Service

Statewide Listing of Open Markets that Accept EBT Cards

FFMB 7 Alapai & Beretania St Honolulu
Green Dragon Markets 200A Waiehu Beach Rd Wailuku
Greenwheel Food Hub 1830 Kanakanui St Honolulu
Greenwheel Food Hub at HNL Farmers Market 777 Ward Ave Honolulu
Greenwheel Food Hub at Waimanalo Health Ctr 41-1347 Kalanianaole Hwy Waimanalo
Greenwheel Food Hub at W. Loch Elderly Village 91-1472 Renton Rd Ewa Beach
Halawa DP 18 99-795 Iwaiwa St Aiea
Hanapepe Sunshine Farmers Market Old Hanapepe Town Hanapepe Park Hanapepe
Hawaii Kai 25 300 Keahole St Honolulu
Hawi Farmers Market Llc 55-515 Hawi Rd Hawi
Hilo Coffee Mill Farmers Market 17-995 Volcano Rd Mountain View
Hilo Farmers Market 330 Kamehameha Ave Hilo
Kailua DP 16 21 S Kainalu Dr Kailua
Kalihi Valley DP 23 1911 Kamehameha IV Rd Honolulu
Kamehameha 21 1400 Kalihi St Honolulu
Kaneohe DP 17 45-660 Keaahala Rd Kaneohe
Kapaa Sunshine Farmers Market Kahar Rd New Town Park Kapaa
Kapiolani Park 14 Monsarrat & Paki Honolulu
Kapolei CP 1 91-1049 Kamaaha Loop Kapolei
Kauai Independent Food Bank 3285 Waapa Rd Ste A Lihue
Kaumualii St 22 700 Kalihi St Honolulu
KCC FARMERS MARKET 3-1901 Kaumualii Hwy Lihue
Keauhou Farmers Market 78-6831 Alii Drive Kailua-Kona
Kilauea Farmers Market 2460 Keneke St Kilauea
Kinoole Farmer’s Market 1990 Kinoole St Hilo
Kokua Kalihi Valley Comp. Family Ser. 2239 N School St Honolulu
Kokua Kalihi Valley Comp. Family Ser. N School St & Linapuni Honolulu
Koloa Sunshine Market Maluhia Rd Koloa
Kukuiula Farmers Market 2829 Ala Kalanikaumaka Poipu
Lihue Sunshine Farmers Market Hoolako St Vidinha Stadium Lihue
Makawao Farmers Market 3654 Baldwin Ave Makawao
Makiki DP 5 1527 Keeaumoku St Honolulu
Makuu Farmers Market Co. 15-2131 Keaau Pahoa Rd Pahoa
Manoa DP 4 Manoa Rd Honolulu
Mililani DP 11 94-1150 Lanikuhana Ave Mililani
Mother Waldron 6 525 Coral St Honolulu
Mystical Dawn Apothecary 15-280 Puni Makai Loop S Pahoa
Old Stadium 13 2237 S King St Honolulu
Palolo DP 12 2007 Palolo Ave Honolulu
Pokai Bay BP 19 85-037 Pokai Bay St Waianae
Royal Kunia 2 Kupuna Lp & Kupuohi St Waipahu
Salt Lake 24 5337 Likini St Honolulu
SPACE Market 12247 West Pohakupele Loop Pahoa
Upcountry Farmers Market Kula Malu Town Center Football Field Lot Pukalani
Volcano Farmers Market 19-4030 Wright Rd Volcano
Wahiawa Farmers Market 1067 California Ave Wahiawa
Waianae Farmers’ Market 85-251 Farrington Hwy Waianae
Waiau DP 8 Komo Mai Dr Pearl City
Waikele CP 3 94-870 Lumiaina St Waipahu
Waimanalo BP 15 41-741 Kalanianaole Hwy Waimanalo
Waipahu DP 9 N Cane & California Wahiawa
Waipahu DP 9 94-230 Paiwa St Waipahu 

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