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Posted: August 21, 2017

Local grown fruits and vegetables for everyone

Nutrition Coupon Program benefits over 80 families in Cranbrook and Kimberley

Residents of our region can often face barriers when trying to access healthy fruits and vegetables to eat. Since 2013 Community Connections Society has partnered with Cranbrook Farmers’ Market to make farmers markets more accessible to families and seniors.

Jessica Tichenor, Sunpower Farm

An initiative of the BC Association of Farmers’ Markets, the Farmers Market Nutrition Coupon Program provides participants with the resources to purchase B.C. products such as fruits, vegetables, cut herbs, nuts, dairy and meat.

“This program is a much needed resource in our community,” said Seamus Damstrom, Cranbrook Food Action Committee Food Sustainability Summer Student. “Not only do program participants receive farm fresh food, they also meet the farmers, pick up new recipes and learn how to include the market in their meal planning strategy.”

Currently, the program benefits 66 families in Cranbrook and 20 in Kimberley.

The farmer’s family benefits as well and the funds stay in the community or region and support the local economy. Last year, Cranbrook Farmers’ Market vendors received over $15,400 worth in coupons.

Participants also take part in a series of workshops or community get togethers at the local Public Produce Garden in Cranbrook and the Open Gate Garden in Kimberley, which are organized by Cranbrook Food Action Committee. When participants attend the market for the first time they are often treated to a market tour from the manager, kids get to taste sweet fruits and shoppers can ask questions on how to cook unfamiliar vegetables like garlic scapes or kale.

Lead image: Seamus Damstrom, Cranbrook Food Action Committee Food Sustainability Summer Student. Photos submitted

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