Written by The Business Journal Staff
Starting June 1, California Women, Infants and Children (WIC) families will see a temporary increase in their monthly WIC fruits and vegetables benefit to $35. Currently, children ages one to five receive $9 per month, and pregnant, postpartum, and breastfeeding women receive $11 per month.
Funding from the American Rescue Plan Act allowed the California WIC program to enhance the program’s fruits and vegetables benefit for the summer.
The fruits and vegetables benefit has a significant impact on the dietary quality of WIC families, according to a news release from the Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission. Eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables reduces the prevalence of chronic disease and strengthens the immune system. This increased benefit will allow families enrolled in the WIC program to buy and consume healthier fruits and vegetables.
The fruit and vegetables benefit increase will be issued from June 1 through Sept. 30. Benefits are good for 30 days from the date they are issued. For example, benefits issued on September 27 can still be used through October 26.
WIC families can also combine their fruits and vegetables benefit with WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program checks for even more purchasing power at Farmer’s Markets. The checks are issued in addition to regular WIC benefits between May and November and can be used to buy fresh, unprepared, locally grown fruits, vegetables and herbs from WIC farmers, farmers’ markets, or roadside stands.
California residents can learn more about the summer fruit and vegetable increase and the WIC Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program by going to MyFamily.WIC.ca.gov or WICFarmers.ca.gov