Market

Katie Anderson/Observer-Reporter

In this photo taken in July, Edwardo Jimenez, left, and Jose Ordaz, who work for Simmons Farm in Peters Township, run a produce stand during North Strabane’s farmers market in the township park.

For those 60 or older who meet the criteria, it’s not too late to stop by the local senior community center or Area Agency on Aging office to pick up $20 worth of vouchers that can be used at area farmers’ markets.

The Pennsylvania Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) is a cooperative effort including the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Pennsylvania WIC Program, Southwestern PA Area Agency on Aging and senior centers and distribution sites to support the nutrition of consumers, as well as to support the economic needs of Pennsylvania farmers by stimulating sales at farmers’ markets.

The program provides four $5 vouchers totaling $20 to those who are eligible one time during the program year. The vouchers may be redeemed at designated area farmers markets through Nov. 30.

To be eligible, an individual must be 60 years of age or older by Dec. 31, 2018, and must be a resident of Fayette, Greene or Washington County. An eligible individual’s gross income includes interest, Social Security, wages, Black Lung, etc., and must be at or below $22,459. For two in a household, the income may be $30,451.

An eligible senior may authorize a proxy to pick up and use the FMNP vouchers as long as the benefits ultimately reach the eligible participant. However, proxy statements must be completed prior to picking up the vouchers. Proxy statements are available at local senior centers, Area Agency on Aging offices and online at www.swpa-aaa.org.

Seniors living in nursing or residential facilities, where meals are provided, are not eligible.

To redeem vouchers, look for the PA Preferred logo when visiting a local farmers’ market.

Checks may only be used to purchase fruits and vegetables grown in Pennsylvania or produce that was purchased directly from a previously approved farmer from the states of Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, and West Virginia. Wholesale produce is not eligible.

A list of participating farmers should be available where vouchers are distributed.

Farmers cannot accept vouchers for citrus fruits such as lemons and oranges, tropical fruits such as bananas, pineapples and mangos, not growable in Pennsylvania, or processed foods such as jams, honey, cider or baked goods.

For more information, contact a senior center in Fayette, Greene or Washington County or call the Area Agency on Aging at 724-489-8080 ext. 4430 or one of the county offices:

  • Washington County, Washington, 724-228-7080
  • Greene County, Waynesburg, 724-852-1510
  • Fayette County, Uniontown, 724-430-4603
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