Food assistance coupons available for farmers market purchases for eligible Iowans

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DES MOINES, Iowa (KCRG) - Vouchers for eligible Iowans will be available for use at local farmers markets through the growing season through a federally-funded program, according to state officials.

The Farmers Market Nutrition Program provides packets of additional vouchers that can only be used at local markets. It gives recipients the ability to purchase fresh produce at farmers markets or farm stands between now and October 31.

Benefits are available to certain Iowans who qualify under the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program and seniors who meet age and income requirements.

"The WIC and Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Programs are unique because the vouchers can only be used at Iowa farmers markets," Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig said. "This helps support local food production and makes healthy fruits and vegetables available to all Iowans."

WIC recipients may qualify for nine coupons valued at $3 each. State officials expect to be able to provide these to over 26,000 people on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Qualified seniors will receive ten coupons valued at $3 each, with enough funding for over 19,200 individuals. Like the WIC benefit, it will be on a first-come, first-serve basis.

More information on the program can be found on the Department of Agriculture's website.