During the summer and early fall, coupons for fresh Pennsylvania grown fruits and vegetables are issued to WIC participants who qualify for the Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP). Last year, over 156,000 coupons for fresh produce were issued by MFHS. The program is jointly sponsored by the Untied States Department of Agriculture, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and the Pennsylvania Department of Health.
How much will I receive?
Each year the value of the checks is set by the PA Department of Agriculture. Currently, WIC participants would receive $20.00 in four checks of $5.00 each.
Who is eligible?
In order to participate in FMNP, you must be a Pennsylvania WIC participant. Each year the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture determines which categories of WIC participants will be eligible for the FMNP. Check with your WIC staff to see if you or your children are eligible for the current FMNP period.
How do I use the FMNP checks?
- Your WIC Center will provide you with the current market listing. FMNP checks can be used in any Pennsylvania county.
- At the market, look for a sign showing which farmers accept the FMNP checks.
- Select fruits and vegetables you wish to purchase. Produce must be "Grown or Growable: in Pennsylvania". Absolutely no citrus fruits (oranges, lemons, limes, grapefruit) and no tropical fruit (bananas, pineapples, mangoes, etc.) Processed foods such as jams, honey, cider, and baked goods are not allowed with FMNP checks.
- Ask the farmer - they will know which of the produce is eligible.
Which fruits and vegetables are available?
In early summer try: asparagus, lettuce, rhubarb, strawberries, cherries, peas, spinach, Swiss chard, greens, and radishes.
In mid-summer try: apricots, corn, mushrooms, peppers, beans, cucumbers, nectarines, squash, berries, eggplant, okra, tomatoes, cantaloupe, melons, peaches, watermelon, and celery.
In late summer and fall try: apples, cauliflower, parsnips, rutabagas, beets, grapes, pears, squash, broccoli, kale, plums, sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, kohlrabi, potatoes, turnips, cabbage, leeks, pumpkins, yams, carrots, onions, and zucchini.
Where can I get more information on fruits and vegetables?
WIC nutrition centers must provide nutrition education to recipients when FMNP checks are issued. The importance of eating fresh fruits and vegetables is emphasized as part of the WIC nutrition education program. WIC staff must explain program procedures; provide a FMNP brochure explaining the procedures; and a list of authorized farmers’ markets in the area.
Other sources of information on fresh fruits and vegetables are:
I’m a farmer, how can I find out more about this program?
Call the PA Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program at 1-800-468-2433 or 717-772-2693 or write to: Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program, Bureau of Food Distribution, 2301 North Cameron Street, Harrisburg, PA 17110-9408.
For more in-depth information on the Farmers’ Market nationally go to one of these sites: