The Senior FarmShare program is an opportunity for low income seniors to receive $50 worth of fresh fruits and vegetables from local farmers during the growing season. This program was created by the state with funding from the USDA to provide the elderly population of Maine (the grayest state in the nation) with food that would improve the quality of their health. For the elderly below the poverty line, even basic groceries from supermarkets are often financially unattainable -- and that's only if there is a local supermarket accessible to them, which is often not the case in very rural areas. The program facilitates easy access to produce by way of home delivery by the farmers themselves or local pickup locations.
My mom, Carly DelSignore, co-owner of Tide Mill Organic Farm has been participating in this essential program for 19 years. "It's fulfilling to provide good food to an undeserved and appreciative demographic in my state," says Carly, "while also benefiting from the marketing opportunity that it provides to my farm enterprise." I myself have personally experienced the ways that this program has benefited members of my community. An example of what we provide in the average share would consist of a half pound of green beans, a bag of beet greens, a bunch of turnips, and a half pound of peas. We try to grow our crops according to the tastes and preferences of the seniors in our area.
I'm so glad to see more and more farms participating in the Senior FarmShare program and i'm happy to see the difference it makes in our community.