JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Agriculture announced that the Missouri Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) and WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (WICFMNP) have launched for the 2022 season. Both programs are funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service and assist low-income recipients in obtaining fresh Missouri Grown produce.
“Each of these programs provides the opportunity to purchase fresh, delicious product grown and raised by Missouri producers,” said Director of Agriculture Chris Chinn. “Recipients, growers and the local economy all benefit from these worthwhile programs.”
Low-income seniors in the Kansas City, St. Louis, Springfield and Mid-Missouri regions can apply to receive vouchers which will allow them to purchase eligible foods from an authorized farmer at a Missouri farmers’ market or roadside stand. A total of up to 10 vouchers worth $5 each may be issued to each qualifying Missouri household. To identify the regions that contained the highest number of eligible citizens, the Missouri Department of Agriculture worked with the Missouri Department of Social Services.
Seniors are encouraged to consider using a proxy to both apply for vouchers and purchase eligible foods at a farmers’ market. Each senior may designate one proxy on their behalf. The senior and the proxy must both sign the program application in order to receive the vouchers.
Seniors may apply for vouchers at the following locations:
- Springfield – SeniorAge Area Agency on Aging, (417) 862-0762
- St. Louis County and St. Louis City – Aging Ahead, (636) 207-0847
- Kansas City – University of Missouri Extension, (816) 482-5850
- Columbia – Aging Best, (573) 443-5823
WIC participants in the Kansas City, St. Louis, Springfield and Mid-Missouri regions can also apply to receive four benefit vouchers worth $5 each to purchase eligible foods from an authorized farmer at a Missouri farmers’ market or roadside stand. Thirty-four WIC agencies in the four areas are assisting with the program. WIC participants can request Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program vouchers from the same agency where they receive their WIC benefits.
The Department’s Missouri Grown team has trained and authorized more than 200 farmers to participate in the program. Authorized farmers will be identified by a sign that states the booth is proudly participating in the Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program. Benefit vouchers may be used to purchase fresh, raw, unprepared foods grown in Missouri and sold at a farmers’ market or roadside stand. Eligible foods include fruits, vegetables, fresh cut cooking herbs and honey (SFMNP only).
Vouchers will be available through Sept. 30 and must be redeemed by Oct. 31. Farmers interested in learning more about eligibility and participation should email the Department of Agriculture at FarmersMarket@mda.mo.gov.
For more information about the Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition and WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition programs, visit the Department’s Farmers’ Market webpage.
For more information about the Missouri Department of Agriculture and its programs, visit the Department online at Agriculture.Mo.Gov.
— Missouri Department of Agriculture