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CalFresh (formerly Food Stamps)

  • Listed: December 16, 2018 4:48 am
  • Expires: 997958 days, 18 hours


CalFresh (formerly Food Stamps)

What is the CalFresh Program?

The CalFresh Program, formerly known as Food Stamps and federally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), can add to your food budget to put healthy and nutritious food on the table. The program issues monthly electronic benefits that can be used to buy most foods at many markets and food stores. The amount of the benefit is based on the size of your household, your income, and your housing expenses. CalFresh benefits come on a plastic card, called the Golden State Advantage Card, which you can use just like a bank card at most food stores.

How do I apply for CalFresh?

You can apply for CalFresh by completing an online application. You can also apply by going to the local county office during business hours. Click the Contact link at the top of the page to find the office near you.

EatFresh.org is playful, engaging and easy to use. It includes:

  • Recipes searchable by food type, so that you can find recipes using whatever ingredients you have.
  • Recipes that can be cooked in crockpots and microwaves.
  • Ask a Dietician: Type in your question and a dietician sends you the answer.
  • Tips about nutrition and healthy lifestyles.
  • Text, email, share and print recipes.
  • Discussions online about nutrition or cooking.
  • Post recipes on Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter.
  • The locations of farmers’ markets that accept EBT, and food pantries in your county.

Do I have to be finger printed to get CalFresh?


What can I buy with my CalFresh Benefits?

You can buy food as well as plants and seeds to grow food. You will not be charged sales tax on items you buy with CalFresh. You cannot buy pet food, vitamins, medicines, alcohol, tobacco, paper products, fast food or food that will be eaten in the store. If the county you live in participates in the Restaurant Meals Program and you are elderly (60 or older), disabled and/or homeless, you can purchase food at approved participating restaurants. Contact your county representative for details.

Is there a limit on the number of people I can apply for?

No, there is no limit to the number of people you can apply for; however, the people you can apply for must live in your home and buy and eat meals with you in the home. If you have children less than 22 years of age living with you in the home, you must apply for them and their family, if any, even if they buy and eat meals separately from your family.

How long does it take to get CalFresh?

The county has up to 30 days to approve or deny your application. If you need food before 30 days you may be eligible for Expedited Services.

What does ‘Report My Changes or Renew Benefits’ mean?

Report My Changes

Most people will need to report their income and living situation in the 6th month of their yearly CalFresh certification period. The county will tell you more about what and when you will need to report.

Renew Benefits

Once a year all households must attend an interview to determine continued eligibility. The purpose of the interview is to report changes of address, family size, children’s school attendance, employment, income, property and expenses.

CalFresh Restaurant Meals Program (RMP)

The CalFresh Restaurant Meals Program is an optional county program that allows CalFresh recipients who are 60 years of age or older, disabled, or homeless to use their CalFresh benefits to purchase prepared meals at approved participating restaurants in certain counties.

Please contact the county directly for more information on the RMP.  Below is a list of participating counties as of 2016:

  • Alameda
  • Los Angeles
  • Sacramento
  • San Diego
  • San Francisco
  • San Luis Obispo
  • Santa Clara
  • Santa Cruz

If your county is not listed here, ask your CalFresh Eligibility Worker if you can use your EBT card at participating restaurants in your area.  New counties are joining every year and working with restaurants all the time.

Disclaimer: The community resource directory information is deemed accurate and up-to-date, however, you should always contact the agency or provider to confirm this information and make an appointment. Be sure to confirm payment information with the provider, if payment is required. We are not affiliated to any of the organizations listed in this app/website. The information provided in this app/site is for the benefit of the community and and we are not liable for any information changed from the date we published this information. Please contact us if you like to make any changes in the information by emailing beracahsites@gmail.com

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