Today Governor Susana Martinez announced New Mexico's successful expansion of Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) benefits to include reimbursement for any authorized farmer food roadside stand selling fresh, local produce. WIC is the Special Supplemental Food Program for women, infants, and children, which helps more kids and families get the nutritious food they need to eat and live healthier. The program also includes Senior Dollars, a supplemental food program for low-income seniors.
"Our New Mexico farmers grow some of the highest-quality produce in the country," said Governor Martinez. "This expansion helps more of our kids and seniors have access to these fresh fruits and vegetables in communities throughout New Mexico, including areas where grocery markets aren't always accessible. It's a great opportunity for both families and farmers."
In 2012, Governor Martinez's administration expanded the reimbursement program for WIC to include any authorized New Mexico farmers' market or roadside stand in the WIC reimbursement program. The program has become very successful, with nearly $72,000 of reimbursements from 11 authorized roadside stands in Fiscal Year 2013 alone. For Fiscal Year 2014, New Mexico is projecting even greater success, with nine roadside stands already participating, and three additional stands currently being processed. Five new farmers' markets will be participating, in addition to the 56 already authorized for WIC reimbursement.
"We are proud of Governor Martinez's continued support for New Mexico's family farmers," said Jimmy Wagner of Wagner Farms in Corrales, where Governor Martinez made the announcement. "Programs like this help our local farms get more of our high-quality fruits and vegetables to local families, helping them to eat better and live healthier lives."
Wagner Farms is family farming business with a long history in New Mexico, owned and operated by the Wagner family in Corrales. Wagner Farms also owns and operates the Wagner's Farmland Experience, which provides wholesome, family-oriented outdoor activities each fall from mid-September through October.