Beginning today, eligible seniors can apply online for the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program and receive vouchers to purchase produce from participating farmers markets and farm stores. Over 3,700 vouchers valued at $80 are available and may be used for fresh, nutritious, locally grown and produced fruits, vegetables and honey.
Participants must meet the following criteria to apply:
- Be a Pierce County resident over the age of 60 (or 55 if you are Native American/Alaska Native).
- Have an income at or below 185% of the federal poverty level, as shown in the table below.
Maximum monthly income
Add $792/month for each additional household member
This year, vouchers will be distributed on electronic benefits cards with pre-programmed PIN numbers, which may take additional time. Applicants are encouraged to review their application and ensure the address is correct before applying to reduce wait times. We anticipate vouchers will be mailed to eligible residents 4-6 weeks after application submission.
“Food insecurity is a problem that impacts our entire community, but especially seniors,” says Aaron VanValkenburg, Aging and Disability Resources manager. “Older adults are often on limited incomes and can lack reliable transportation to access healthy food. The Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program makes it easier, and cheaper, for Pierce County seniors to access locally sourced and grown fruits and vegetables.”
Residents can also apply by contacting the Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) at 253-798-4600 to request a paper application or receive help submitting one online. Callers should be prepared to provide their name, birthdate, household size, income and other demographic information. Residents in adult family homes or other facilities where meals are provided are not eligible for this program.
Applications in other languages, electronic benefits card instructions and full program details are available online at www.PierceCountyWa.gov/FarmersMarket.
The Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program is for low-income seniors and is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the State of Washington, but the program is coordinated locally by Pierce County Aging and Disability Resources, the local Area Agency on Aging for Pierce County.
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Kari Moore, Pierce County Communications