The history of WIC at NCGA farmers' markets
In the summer of 1995, the North Coast Growers' Association (NCGA) was pleased to kick off its first year of involvement with the WIC program (Women, Infants & Children). By securing a local grant, the association was able to participate in the development of the WIC program's checks in Humboldt County, which was designed to help get fresh fruits and vegetables on the tables of women with infants and children who might not otherwise have been able to afford them. Our farmers soon voted to continue the program and provide additional funding.
How do I spend my checks at market?
Many farmers at NCGA farmers' markets have been approved to receive WIC checks. Look for WIC signs at our booths or ask your favorite farmers if they accept the checks.
Each check will give you a list of eligible products that your check can be spent on and will have a total dollar value. Our farmers cannot provide change if you do not spend the full value of your check. Ask your farmer if you would like help selecting items that will get you to your total check amount but will not go over. This is a common request and we are happy to help!
Here are some basics:
- One check, one farmer. Use the entire FMNP check with one farmer. You cannot split a purchase between two farmers
- Eggs, milk, bread, honey, nuts, baked goods, or processed foods are not allowed WIC purchases at the farmers’ market
- You will not receive change from any WIC transaction
- Do not exchange WIC checks for tokens or scrip
- Ask to speak with the Market Manager if you have a problem at the market
Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) offers $28 booklets. Available from most local WIC Agencies in May or June of each year. Limited supply. Use only at WIC-authorized Farmers’ Markets.
WIC Card Cash Value Benefit cards are available from all WIC local agencies year-round. Electronic benefit provided on a plastic card, similar to a debit card. Use at WIC-authorized grocery stores and with select farmers at NCGA markets.
- Use only the Cash Value Benefit for fresh fruits and vegetables at the Farmers’ Market
- Give your WIC card directly to the farmer for your purchase