18 Jun State Ups Low-Income Families’ Access To Farmers Markets
Photo: Peyrl Herrera (Flickr)
The federally-funded Farmers Market Nutrition Program is getting a boost this year in Indiana.
The program, in partnership with the Women, Infants and Children program, provides lower-income pregnant women, moms and children access to healthy foods sold at farmers markets and roadside stands.
Indiana has added markets in three additional counties, as well as expanded the program in existing counties.
The program also increased the amount of money available to be spent at farmers markets this summer.
Indiana’s Women, Infants and Children Director Eldin Whetstone says the effort is also a good way to educate people about healthy food options.
“We provide knowledge about how they can cook the foods, and knowledge about when is the best time to buy fresh foods during the season,” Whetstone says. “It’s more than just the dollar. We’re also providing education on how they can best use those foods we are allowing them to purchase.”
Whetstone says another successful aspect of the program is bringing customers to participating farmers markets.
Last year 17,000 households participated, and spent more than $140,000.
About 70 Indiana counties participate in the Farmers Market Nutrition Program that runs from June to October.