B.C. expands farmers market program for low-income residents and expectant mothers

Health Minister Adrian Dix announced yesterday that the B.C. Farmers Market Nutrition Coupon Program will receive an extra $750,000.

Province says number of households participating in program is expected to rise to over 3,900

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix, centre, Agriculture Minister Lana Popham and Environment Minister George Heyman announced the expansion of a food voucher program at the Trout Lake Farmers Market on Saturday. (Adrian Dix/Twitter)

The B.C. government is expanding a program that provides healthy, locally grown food to low-income residents and expectant mothers.

Health Minister Adrian Dix announced Saturday that the B.C. Farmers Market Nutrition Coupon Program will receive an extra $750,000.

"Farmers' markets support better nutrition, as well as local entrepreneurs and growers throughout B.C.," Dix said. 

That means eligible households will now receive $336 in coupons to use over a four-month period to help them purchase local food — including fruits and vegetables, dairy and eggs — from farmers markets between June 11 and Oct. 31.

The program is administered by the B.C. Association of Farmers Markets, which offers the coupons to participants enrolled in nutrition and skills-building programs at various community agencies. The association accepts donations from the public to help run the program.

The province says the number of households participating in the program is expected to rise to more than 3,900 from 3,708 by March 2020.

The program includes participating farmers markets from across B.C.

With files from CBC News

Clarifications

  • A previous version of this story stated that eligible households will receive $336 in coupons weekly. In fact, coupons worth $336 will be available to use over a four-month period.
    May 10, 2018 11:02 AM PT