LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A new program at one of Louisville’s farmer’s markets aims to promote healthy eating for expecting moms and their families. 

What You Need To Know

  • Expecting moms on Medicaid can get weekly vouchers to buy fresh food

  • It’s located at the Phoenix Hill Nulu Farmers’ Market in Louisville

  • The Farmers’ Market runs each Tuesday from 3 to 6 p.m. through October

  • Fresh Rx For Moms is available at 11 farmers’ markets in Kentucky

Fresh Rx For Moms has expanded to the Phoenix Hill Nulu Farmers’ Market. Pregnant mothers on Medicaid get $24 in tokens per week for 12 weeks that can be spent on fruits and vegetables at the market. 

All vendors at the farmers' market accept the tokens given to expecting mothers. (Spectrum News 1/Mason Brighton)

“You don’t have to spend the $24 each week. You can accumulate them until the corn comes out or the green beans or the watermelon. You know, whatever it is you are excited about,” said Cindy Brown Kinlock, market manager for the Phoenix Hill Nulu Farmers Market. 

Kinlock said there’s enough funding to support 35 moms, but so far participation has been low and only a handful of mothers have signed up.

One of them is Sydney Ross, who’s pregnant with her third child who’s due in November. 

“It’s really important for me to be able to have the freshest items that we can possibly find, because they are the most nutrient [rich] items that you can find and I like to support local farmers as well,” Ross said. “We plan on coming every week that we are able to.” 

The Phoenix Hill Nulu Farmers Market has been around for 16 years and currently has programs in place for people receiving SNAP benefits and the elderly. Fresh RX is its latest way to promote healthy eating. 

“The Phoenix Hill neighborhood is one of those areas that can be considered a food desert and the farmers’ market has always tried to help fill that gap,” Kinlock said.

Only a handful of the 35 available spots in the Fresh Rx For Moms program have been filled. (Spectrum News 1/Mason Brighton

As food prices continue to rise, Ross said she’s glad something like this is available, especially for families like hers that are receiving federal aid.  

“We have the option to try out things that we’ve never tried before and so far everything that we have tried that has been new has been really, really delicious,” Ross said.

Each mother can receive nearly $300 to spend here. Money that not only buys fresh food but also helps the small businesses taking part in the market. 

It’s a win-win for everybody. 

Mothers looking to take part in Fresh RX For Moms can sign up at the Phoenix Hill Nulu Farmers Market, which runs each Tuesday from 3 to 6 p.m. There is also a nutritionist on-site if moms have questions.

Fresh Rx is also offered at 10 additional markets in Kentucky. More about the statewide program can be found here