The Farmers’ Market WIC program

The Maine Department of Human Services and the Maine Department of Agriculture cooperate to sponsor the Maine WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program. Using federal funding, these special WIC checks are given to folks who already qualify for the regular WIC checks, which are redeemable in stores for specified products. The Farmers’ Market WIC Checks are usually issued to recipients in May through August as they come in for their regular WIC checks.

Farmer’s Market WIC Checks are spendable only at farmers’ markets and farm stands and can be used only for fresh, unprocessed fruits, vegetables and herbs. They come in denominations of $5 and, like a personal check, they get signed by the user when the purchase is made. The farmer then deposits them like a regular check after stamping them with a unique number issued to each farmer by the WIC program.

Click here for details of the program or call 800- 437-9300 and ask for Dawn Mulcahey. There is no deadline during the year for joining.

About Tom Roberts

When I started attending the Brewer Farmers’ Market back in August of 1983, my sole concern was being able to sell the produce my farm was growing at a good price. After attending market for a year or two, I began to realize that how the market was organized had a great impact on my sales. And how the market was organized also influenced how it made decisions about dues, new members, what could be sold at market, and how it promoted itself—and this, too, had an impact on my sales. So I got involved in the market’s steering committee and began to understand how various market members thought the market should operate. Some wanted a market czar, some wanted everyone to be allowed to do their own thing. But everyone seemed to agree that if the market as a whole did well, then so did they.