Some farmers markets accept vouchers from senior citizens

MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – Plenty of people in the Mobile area are taking advantage of federal programs to get vouchers and coupons to buy healthy food, like vegetables and fruit.

But, some people may not realize they’re eligible.

FARMER’S MARKET NUTRITION PROGRAM

Thursday was a busy morning at the Halls Mill Farmers Market.

Plenty of customers were buying fruits and vegetables, and many were using vouchers and coupons that are part of the Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program.

Its affiliated the Women, Infants, and Children’s Program, or WIC, to provide fresh, unprepared, locally grown fruits and vegetables to WIC participants.

Travis Hyatt with Sessiins Farms said, “We’ve been doing it now like 15 or 16 years. Some of the other farmers, they accept them. We have several different locations that we are at during the week.”

HELP FOR SENIORS

Another federal program is the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program.

The program awards grants to states to provide low-income seniors with coupons that can be exchanged for eligible foods, like fruits and vegetables, at farmer’s markets and roadside stands.

Many senior citizens at the market Thursday were using the coupons.

One said, “I try to make my trips count, so, when I come, I try to get everything I can get.”

When asked how he liked the program, he said, “It’s awesome. I think its awesome for the elderly people, you know what I mean? The elderly, and others, whomever, gets these stamps are very blessed to get them.”

And, federal officials hope all low income seniors realize healthy choices are available.

MORE INFORMATION

Unfortunately, Alabama has reached the maximum number of applicants this year for the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program.

But, you can apply again in January.

Here are websites that list farmers markets in Mobile and Baldwin Counties. http://www.fns.usda.gov/fmnp/wic-farmers-market-nutrition-program-fmnp

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