Low-income residents can take advantage of buying Missouri grown produce now that the state’s Farmers Market Nutrition Programs have kicked off this summer.

Taylor Tuttle is the Missouri Grown Program Manager.

“The goal of these programs is to help low-income seniors and also WIC participants to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables, herbs, and in the case of seniors, honey at local farmers markets and roadside stands,” Tuttle explained. “The goal of the program is also to help support Missouri farmers who sell at those farmers markets and authorized roadside stands.”

Participants in the Kansas City, St. Louis, Springfield, and mid-Missouri regions can apply to receive benefits which will allow them to buy eligible foods from an authorized farmer.

“So it is a very easy process,” said Tuttle. “We have partnered again with the local agencies. So, whether that be the WIC offices in those eligible counties or the agencies on aging, we’ve partnered with them to help us implement this program and they certainly do a great job of connecting with those eligible recipients and getting them all of the required paperwork and helping them through the process.”

The benefits are available through the end of September and must be redeemed by October.

“Eligible seniors are allowed $50 per household,” according to Tuttle. “So that’s for the year to use again at those farmers markets and roadside stands with authorized farmers to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables and honey. On the WIC side, it is $20 per eligible participant, children four months and older and women who are already receiving WIC benefits.”

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