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Federal Program Makes Fruits And Veggies Cheaper For Floridians

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack was in Orlando today to announce a new grant program to make fruits and vegetables cheaper for 5 million Americans.

The USDA announced $31.5 million dollars in grants today to help low-income Americans afford healthy foods. U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilack announced the grants in Orlando.

They include a $2 million dollar grant to Florida Certified Organic Growers and Consumers. Vilsack says the group will make dollar-for-dollar matches to make fruits and vegetables cheaper in grocery stores and farmers markets.

“I think it’s fairly safe to say from the medical research that more fruits and vegetable consumption is better for people,” Vilsack said. “And that’s what we’re trying to do, make sure those options are available regardless of your financial situation.”

The program is expected to reach more than 18,000 Floridians using SNAP, the program formally known as food stamps. The goal is to deliver affordable fruits and vegetables in 50 markets in 21 counties in Florida. Florida Certified Organic Growers and Consumers received the $2 million grant.

Congress put $100 million into the program in the 2014 Farm Bill, and more grants will come in 2016. Nationwide the project will reach 5 million.


WMFE is a partner with Health News Florida, a statewide collaborative reporting on health care.

Health reporting on WMFE is supported in part by AdventHealth.

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Abe Aboraya

About Abe Aboraya

Health Reporter

Abe Aboraya started writing for newspapers in High School. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in 2007, he spent a year traveling and working as a freelance reporter for the Seattle Times and the Seattle Weekly, and working for local news websites in the San Francisco Bay area. Most recently Abe ... Read Full Bio »