USDA’s WIC food assistance program is exponentially increasing fruit and vegetable purchases through the summer.
The Women, Infants and Children (WIC) supplemental program from the U.S. Department of Agriculture is increasing the cash-value voucher amount for fresh fruit and veggies for participants. Currently, children are given $9 and adults are given $11 a month for fruit and vegetable purchases in the program. USDA is increasing that amount to a flat $35 a month for all participants.
The increase will be funded through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. USDA is offering states, tribal nations and territories the option of boost for up to four months to provide additional relief. More than 80 states and other entities have opted-in for the increase. Both California and Arizona are part of that group. Arizona is running the increase from May through August while California is running it from June through September.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said in a release, “To more effectively promote healthier eating patterns, we need to promote nutrition security alongside food security to ensure all people at all times have access to nutritious foods and beverages that meet their nutritional needs for an active and healthy life. Nowhere is nutrition security more important than in our WIC program to support mothers and young children.”
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