Take Action! Tell State Budget Leaders to Save CalFresh Fruit and Vegetable Benefits

Published on Mar 19, 2024 in CalFresh, State Legislation

CalFresh participants are at risk of losing benefits. The CalFresh Fruit and Vegetable EBT program served 38,000 households in January 2024, earning $1.6 million of incentives per month.  Because the program is so successful, its funding will be spent down by April 14, 2024. As a result, Californians with low-income will lose up to $60/month for fresh and vegetables – which will make it even harder to buy the food they need at a time of historically high food prices.

The legislature and governor need to put at least $30 million in this year's state budget to help people afford more healthy food for at least 12 more months.

Action Items

We need your help to ensure that CalFresh Fruit and Vegetable benefits continue for the tens of thousands of families that depend on the program. Our state leaders need to hear from you! 

Decisions are being made now — don’t wait, make your voice heard and support increasing CalFresh benefits today.

1) Sign our Petition to State Budget Leaders

Use our Action Alert link to add your name to the petition.

2) Send an Email to your Legislator

Use our Action Alert link to email your state Assemblymember and Senator.

3) Call Your Legislator and Key State Leaders

Key Leaders

Sample call script: 

Hi, my name is _____. I'm a constituent and would like to leave a comment. I urge [Assemblymember or Senator's name] to support funding in the state budget to keep the CalFresh Fruit and Vegetable EBT Program alive. Specifically, I want them to support Assemblymember Alex Lee's request for $30 million dollars so the program can help make healthy food more affordable for California families for at least 12 more months. [A sentence about why the program is important to you] Can I count on your support for keeping the Fruit and Vegetable EBT program going? Thank you for passing along my comment.


CalFresh helps more than five million people put food on the table. But federal benefit levels limit purchasing power, especially in the face of California’s relentlessly high cost of living. For the majority of CalFresh participants, benefits do not last through the whole month.

Recognizing the potential for supplemental benefit programs to fight hunger and support California's economy, the state funded the Fruit and Vegetable EBT program in 2018. The program provides 75,000 CalFresh participants with up to $60 a month in rebates when they buy fresh fruits and vegetables with their CalFresh benefits. The program is providing a total of $2 million in food assistance across the state each month. 

The CalFresh Fruit and Vegetable EBT program has been a great success, but now is being forced to end. Due to the program's popularity, the funding for it has run out far faster than anticipated.

We need the Legislature and Governor to include at least $30 million in the state budget to keep the program going and help more California families. That's only 0.015% of the overall state budget. This program is cost-effective, efficient, and critical. At a time of tight budgets – for both the state and millions of Californians – it's an investment that is absolutely worth continuing.

You can support the CalFresh Fruit & Vegetable Program by joining our campaign and taking one or more of the actions above today!

Questions? Contact: Jared Call at jared@nourishca.org.