2021 Farmers Markets Coupon Program launched
Mayor Kim Janey and the Mayor’s Office of Food Access (OFA) today announced the Farmers Markets Coupon Program started July 1. Following the success of last year's pilot, this year the Mayor’s Office of Food Access has allotted $576,000 in funds to scale up the program during the summer season. Through this program, the City is continuing to support families that experience challenges to buy the food they need and want, and support the small businesses participating at the farmers market. The goal of the Farmers Markets Coupon Program is to encourage all families to utilize farmers markets, while supporting and boosting sales for farmers markets vendors. A list of all farmers markets can be found online.
The Farmers Markets Coupon Program is two-fold. It provides households experiencing food insecurity with coupons to buy fresh produce, dairy products, eggs, meats, and baked goods. It also gives vendors mini-grants to participate in small farmers markets. The mini-grant can be used to pay for operating costs, such as staff at small markets that the vendor does not currently attend. The program runs July 1 to October 31, 2021.
“It is essential that families experiencing food insecurity have access to fresh and nutritious food,” said Mayor Kim Janey. “The Farmers Markets Coupon Program gives residents this opportunity, while also supporting local vendors and small businesses that make Boston the city we know and love. I’d like to thank everyone involved in the launch of this program, and I strongly encourage Boston residents to participate in this amazing program.”
To receive coupons, residents can ask for them at participating local farmers markets. Coupons have a face value of $2.50 and can be used to purchase fresh produce, dairy products, eggs, meats, and baked goods at any of the vendors present in the farmers markets. Residents will receive a $10-page of coupons that include four individual coupons that can be torn off. Coupons are color-coded per month and will expire on the last day of each month. Residents may use more than one coupon to purchase products.
The Office of Food Access encourages residents to pair these coupons with other programs available at farmers markets, such as the Healthy Incentives Program (HIP) and the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) nutrition program. This will make the food available at farmers markets more affordable, and provide families with healthier options.
“With the farmers market coupons we want to make farmers markets accessible to all Bostonians” said Catalina López-Ospina, Mayor’s Office of Food Access “We know that farmers markets play a key role to ensure an equitable recovery, reducing food insecurity and providing nutritious food to our communities.”
The Mayor’s Office of Food Access has partnered with more than 30 community-based organizations to distribute farmers market coupons to families in need throughout different neighborhoods in Boston, including East Boston, Dorchester, Mattapan, Hyde Park, Roslindale, Chinatown, Allston, Brighton, Jamaica Plain, Charlestown, South End, Roxbury, and Mission Hill.
Vendors that are interested in receiving funding to participate at small farmers markets should fill out an application form. Vendors applying to expand to farmers markets located in Mattapan, Roxbury, East Boston, and Dorchester, or are woman-led, Black-led, minority-led will be prioritized. Farmers market vendors interested in being funded to participate at small farmers markets should fill out an application at boston.gov/food-recovery or email email@example.com for additional information.
For more information about food resources available, visit the COVID-19 food resources website.About the Mayor’s Office of Food Access
The Mayor’s Office of Food Access (OFA) strives to give all residents of Boston access to nutritious, affordable, culturally-connected food. Keeping the diversity of Boston’s population at heart, OFA’s goal is to create a more food secure City with a vibrant, inclusive food culture.