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US (CA): Grant encourages fruit & veg purchase for low income families

The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) has received a $3.9 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to help low-income Californians purchase fresh fruits and vegetables at certified farmers’ markets.

The Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) grant will fund the California Nutrition Incentive Program (CNIP), which begins this summer. The program addresses food insecurity by expanding access to fresh fruits and vegetables among low-income Californians while also supporting and expanding markets for California farmers.

“CDFA is thrilled to be selected for this award,” said CDFA Secretary Karen Ross. “The nutrition program is a triple win for California – it supports the health of our low-income shoppers, farmers, and the local economy.”

CNIP will offer nutrition incentives to encourage CalFresh shoppers to purchase healthy food and empower them to increase their consumption of fruits and vegetables. For every benefit dollar they spend at 339 certified farmers’ markets and mobile markets throughout California, CalFresh shoppers will receive an additional dollar to spend on fruits and vegetables at the market, within set parameters. All CalFresh shoppers can benefit from the program simply by spending their benefits at participating certified farmers’ markets.

CNIP, administered by CDFA’s Office of Farm to Fork, builds on the successful California Market Match program in Berkeley, which received a two-year FINI grant in 2015. CNIP emphasizes innovative marketing and outreach to attract more CalFresh shoppers to farmers’ markets, facilitates expansion to new markets, and provides a foundation for testing technologies to make it easier for farmers’ markets to continue offering incentives. The program is made possible through a robust public-private funding structure.

Source: goldrushcam.com

Publication date: 8/10/2017


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