Senior Farmers' Market Nutrition Program
Beginning in 2020, low-income seniors in COA’s five-county service area will be able to participate in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP). The program provides fresh, nutritious, unprepared locally grown fruits, vegetables, herbs and honey through farmers markets, roadside stands and community supported agriculture programs.
To be eligible, a senior must live in Butler, Clermont, Clinton, Hamilton, or Warren counties, be age 60 or older and have an annual household income that is 185% of the poverty level or less. They do not have to be a COA client.
How does the program work?
Eligible seniors who apply will receive a total of $50 worth of coupons to redeem during the 2020 growing season at participating farmers markets in southwestern Ohio. If there is more than one eligible senior in a household who applies, they will each receive $50 in coupons. Once the senior is approved for the program, the coupons, a letter with instructions on how to redeem them and a list of market locations will be mailed to the senior.
Due to COVID-19, farmers’ markets are not running as they normally would. Currently, most markets are requiring customers to pre-order, then pick up their produce on a designated time and day. Participating seniors will be instructed to work with their market of choice to understand its ordering and pick-up process. The health and safety of our seniors is very important and we urge all seniors to follow CDC guidelines related to COVID-19 safety.
How and when can seniors apply?
Once COA begins to accept applications (estimated to be in early June), applicants will be able to do the following:
- Fill out on electronic application on this website
- Download and fill out an application and mail it in
During the COVID-19 pandemic, no signature will be required.
What if a senior is unable to get to the farmers’ market?
A senior may designate a proxy on their application who will be permitted to pick up the produce for them. One person may be a proxy for up to two other people.
How many farmers’ markets will participate?
The program will include both roadside produce stands and larger farmers’ markets (Cincinnati’s Findlay Market, for example). There will be several in each county, with more participating locations in our more populous counties.
What types of foods are part of the program?
Eligible foods include locally grown, fresh vegetables, herbs, fruits and honey. View the SFMNP Eligible Food List.