NH DHHS - WIC Commodity Supplemental Food Programs Provide Coupons for Farmers’ Markets

Concord, NH – Starting in June, the New Hampshire WIC Nutrition and Commodity Supplemental Food (CSF) Programs will be issuing free fruit and vegetables coupons to WIC and CSFP participants to redeem at farmers’ markets. Children enrolled in WIC will receive coupons valued at $12 per month, and households with qualifying seniors 60 years and older will receive coupons valued at $18 per month.

The WIC and Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Programs, under the Nutrition and Health Promotion Section of Public Health at the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), are funded by the US Department of Agriculture to provide fresh, unprepared, locally grown fruits and vegetables to WIC participants and to low-income seniors, as well as to expand the availability, use of, and sales at farmers’ markets.

Coupons may be redeemed at almost 80 farmers’ markets in New Hampshire during the months of June through October 2010. Coupons may be used to purchase any fresh fruits and vegetables sold at the markets, ranging from  apples and broccoli to spinach and tomatoes.

“One of our public health initiatives in the Department is to reduce obesity and overweight rates in adults and children, and promoting fresh fruits and vegetables is one strategy that works,” according to Dr. José Montero, Director of the Division of Public Health Services. “WIC and CSFP will reach about 10,000 families with this nutrition initiative.”

WIC families and CSFP seniors will receive free recipes on how to prepare and cook fresh fruits and vegetables along with a suggested schedule of when specific fruits and vegetables will be available at New Hampshire farmers’ markets.

For a list of farmers’ markets in New Hampshire, visit http://agriculture.nh.gov/publications/documents/farmersmarket.pdf. For more information on enrolling in WIC or CSFP, call the Department’s Nutrition and Health Promotion Section at 1-800-WIC-4321.