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As Michigan finally starts to warm up, delicious cherries, luscious blueberries, and glorious greens have started to appear at local farmers markets and farm stands. Summer provides WIC families an opportunity to experience the taste of Michigan through Project FRESH. This program provides nutritious produce to WIC clients while creating an economic benefit for local farmers. The program gives families with children under age five a booklet of coupons worth $25 that they can use to buy fresh, unprepared, Michigan-grown fruit and vegetables at area farmers markets and participating farm stands. In partnership with MSU Extension, clients are offered in person nutrition education along with information on how to utilize Project FRESH coupons. These coupons can be redeemed until Oct. 31, 2022.
Our 2022 WIC Project FRESH has been off to a great start! So far, we distributed close to 100 booklets of $25 each at the Ypsilanti Downtown and Ann Arbor Kerrytown Farmers markets. Washtenaw County WIC has 420 more books of $25 each remaining to distribute.
Families absolutely enjoy shopping for farm fresh produce the same day. Infants and kids enjoy the interactive educational sessions, like Gabriel, who tagged along with his mother Jenna (pictured above and below) as they stopped by the Kerrytown Farmers Market on a beautiful Michigan morning to pick up and use their Project Fresh coupons on all the amazing produce there.
There will be more Project FRESH distribution days in July, August, and September at the Ann Arbor Kerrytown Market, the Ypsilanti Downtown Market, and the Ypsilanti Depot Town Market. We hope to see many more families receive coupon booklets and use them to purchase fresh and local produce from farmers! WIC participants can call 734-544-6800 for a Project FRESH appointment.
Thank you to all staff involved with Project FRESH! Special recognition to our volunteers who help facilitate Project FRESH coupon distribution to families: Jason Chen, Northwestern University undergrad and Keerthana Akella, BSE, Masters student at EMU.
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