OMAHA, Nebraska, Posted
March 2, 2005 (DTN): Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns
announced the fiscal year 2005 Senior Farmers' Market Nutrition
Program (SFMNP) grant awards to 47 state agencies and tribal organizations
to provide low-income seniors with coupons that can be exchanged
for fresh produce at farmers' markets, roadside stands and community-supported
"These grants will provide low-income seniors the opportunity
to enrich their diets with highly nutritious fresh fruits and vegetables,"
said Johanns. "Local farmers benefit from the program as well
by attracting more customers to their markets for farm fresh products."
The 2002 Farm Bill authorizes and provides $15 million annually
to operate the Senior Farmers' Market Nutrition Program for fiscal
years 2003 through 2007. All 47 grantees that operated this program
in FY 2004 will continue to operate the program during the 2005
The Senior Farmers' Market Nutrition Program provides fresh, locally
grown fruits, vegetables and herbs to low-income seniors, as well
as increases the consumption of agricultural commodities. Through
this increased consumption, the SFMNP will help expand or develop
farmers' markets and other agricultural commodity outlets.
These grants are expected to serve over 800,000 low-income senior
citizens nationwide, an increase from FY 2004. Coupons to purchase
fresh produce this year will be accepted by over 13,000 farmers
at nearly 4,000 markets, roadside stands or community-supported