Berny Unruh: Kansas Seniors Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program

Berny Unruh
Berny Unruh

Low-income Kansas seniors may be eligible for a program that provides KSFMNP checks for unprocessed fruits and vegetables and honey from local farmers in Ellis County. To be eligible to receive Kansas Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program vouchers, the following criteria must be met:

Age: A senior must be 60 years old or older, or at least 55 years old and a member of an Indian Tribal Organization, on the day the money is issued. 

Income level: A senior’s annual gross household income (before taxes are withheld) must be at or below 185% of the federal poverty level. For example, a household of one must have an annual gross income at or below $23,828, or a monthly gross income at or below $1,986.

Applications for the Kansas Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program will be available starting June 1st at the Cottonwood District Extension Office in Hays. Seniors may apply at the Extension Office, 601 Main Street in Hays Monday through Friday from 8 am -12 noon and from 1- 5 pm.

Funds are limited and benefits will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information about the Kansas Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program visit www.kdheks.gov/sfmnp/ or call the Extension Office at 785-628-9430.

Foods that are eligible to be purchased with the vouchers are fresh, nutritious, unprepared, locally grown fruits, vegetables, locally produced honey and herbs for human consumption that are produced in Kansas under normal growing conditions. Vendors eligible to accept the checks will be identified by a “2021 Kansas Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program Checks Accepted Here” sign. These vendors have taken training and will be able to answer questions at the Downtown Hays Market and the Orscheln’s Fresh Produce Market in Hays.

The Senior Farmers’ Market Program is a project of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS). The program is coordinated by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE), which is collaborating with local partners to identify and distribute checks to eligible seniors.

Berny Unruh is the Family and Community Wellness Agent for the Cottonwood Extension District.  She can be reached at 785-628-9430 or at bunruh@ksu.edu