March 1, 2007 marks the launch of the 6th season of the Arizona Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program at targeted open-air farmers’ markets around the state.  In honor of this valuable program, Governor Janet Napolitano has proclaimed the entire month of March “Arizona Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program” month.

 Last year, the program made available over $114,000 to markets in Arizona.  $30,850 of that came to our local economy to support two authorized markets the Community Food Bank manages.  They are the Farmers’ Market open on Tuesdays at the Community Food Bank, 3003 S. Country Club Road and the Santa Cruz River Farmers’ Market at Santa Cruz River Park (North Riverside and West Ontario) open on Thursdays.  The Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program benefits ten local growers who produce a variety of vegetables and fruits for moms and kids enrolled in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women’s, Infants and Children Program (WIC).  Dwight English, owner of English Family Orchard in Willcox, Arizona remarked, “It’s a win/win for both our rural areas and for city kids and their mothers, giving us a chance to teach why to eat these foods, their health benefits and share the farming experience.”

The Arizona Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program provides moms and kids enrolled in the (WIC) Program with $30 worth of vouchers for fresh fruits and vegetables redeemable only at authorized farmers’ markets.  Also available at the markets are fresh eggs, herbs, dried goods, plants, honey and more.  Both farmers’ markets accept food stamps, debit and credit cards.

For more information about the Food Bank’s Farmer’s Markets, please call Kelly Watters at 622-0525 x 242