I also recently read that doctors are providing farmers market tokens as part of food stamp packages (through the SNAP program) as an incentive to get their patients to purchase more fresh, local food.
I was wondering if anyone know whether this goes on in Missoula? I've heard it does but does anyone have stats--for example can you get all of the food stamps converted into farmer's market credits? What percentage of people receiving benefits actually take advantage of this?
A friend told me that you used to be able to use food stamps at the Good Food Store, but not any longer. Is this true?
I won't lie, with 4 kids we get WIC and a little bit of the SNAP benefits. We probably get 75% of our produce from the Missoula Farmer's Market but it really can't satisfy my urge for tropical fruit haha.
What I like to do is make stews and freeze family sized meal portions to make sure I'm making the most out of the locally grown goods. They go bad a lot quicker than their chemically sprayed Wal-Mart counterparts and I hate finding a rotten mess in my fridge that I've forgotten about.
I cook and freeze within 3 days and if I simply end up with too much I drop it off a the Missoula Food Bank or 3:16. 3:16 really needs some produce for the people they help.
SNAP (food stamp) benefits can be used at both Missoula Farmers' Markets (and Missoula has the highest SNAP usage at markets in the state) as well as GFS, the Coop and all other mainstream groceries including Costco.
edibleMISSOULA, a quarterly publication, endeavors to create and grow community through our connection to local foods.
I don't mind using the SNAP at the Missoula Farmer's Market but spending it at the Good Food Store, while healthy, seems to be counterproductive to the entire system due to the prices there. I've done it a couple times but feel weird pulling that card out so I tend to stick my Debit card instead haha.
I just heard an interesting bit on the radio this morning about the many benefits of eating healthy food and produce. The guy interviewed explained how he was aware of research that was being done to proactively and reactively treat cancer through eliminating the foods and nutrients feeding the cancerous tumors. Surely, I am missing the details here, but, part of the extension of this research was to identify the best plants, the best regions to grow them, the best soils, and natural amendments to produce the most healthy and beneficial plants.
Plants and veggies were being tested with a Bricks test (sp?) to determine optimal sugar content and found that root vegetables grown in northern climates had significantly more sugars compared to more southern climates. This sounds kind of obvious, but the implications of spreading this knowledge around can have big implications for the promotion of the value of local markets and products and the value of eating foods that are appropriate to your climate. ah food.
Don't count your weasels before they've popped. And now for a mulberry bush related tiny ad: