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Fresh fruit and vegetable benefit cards available for seniors

(WHSV)
Published: Apr. 5, 2022 at 3:47 PM EDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) is a federally funded program administered by the Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries’ Farmers Market Authority Section. Program funds are still available.

The SFMNP provides eligible seniors with a $30 benefit card to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables from certified farmers at farmers markets and farm stands in the state of Alabama.

State officials said seniors who have applied should receive their benefit card in April 2022.

Important Notice

The Benefit Card will replace the paper vouchers issued in the past. Benefits will be loaded to this same card each year after an application is submitted, therefore, it is very important to keep the card.

The program has limited funding and food benefits are available on a first come, first serve basis. Seniors are encouraged to complete an application as soon as possible.

Eligibility:

Age — Must be 60 years of age or older on the day of application , AND

Income — Applicants’ gross household income must not exceed these limits:

  • $1,772 monthly … for a household of… 1
  • $2,396 monthly … for a household of … 2

Visit http://fma.alabama.gov/SeniorNutrition/ if there are more than 2 people in the household.

How to apply

Applicants must apply online at http://fma.alabama.gov. Unfortunately, applications cannot be taken over the phone or by mail. If approved, a benefit card will be mailed to the address provided on the application. Applicants must reapply every year. However, it is important to keep the benefits card since new benefits will be loaded on the card each year after an application is received.

Where can I use the food benefits?

Benefits can be redeemed at State Sanctioned Farmers Markets, Farm Stands and U-Pick Operations for the purchase of fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, honey and cut herbs from May through November 15, 2022. To view a list by county, visit http://www.fma.alabama.gov/FMCounty.aspx. Benefits can not be used at grocery stores or any location not listed on the redemption site.

How to use the benefit card

When purchasing Alabama grown fresh fruits or vegetables from authorized farmers, present the benefit card use just like you would a debit or credit card. The farmer will scan the card, enter the amount of the purchase, you will confirm the amount and then the purchase is complete.

For more information about the SFMNP, visit http://fma.alabama.gov or call 334-240-7247.

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