Johnnie Mae Farm Market returns to nurture SE Fort Wayne with healthy, affordable produce

Will Kreznick

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – In recent years, the Johnnie Mae Farm Market has helped with providing fresh, affordable produce to southeast Fort Wayne communities. Based out of the renovated fire station #9 building, the City of Fort Wayne and Purdue Extension – Allen County partner to grow fresh produce […]

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – In recent years, the Johnnie Mae Farm Market has helped with providing fresh, affordable produce to southeast Fort Wayne communities.

Based out of the renovated fire station #9 building, the City of Fort Wayne and Purdue Extension – Allen County partner to grow fresh produce in the Renaissance Pointe neighborhood.

“We love coming here and supporting our neighbors, and it’s really the community aspect that allows us to continue to love what we do here,” said Terri Theisen from Purdue Extension – Allen County.

Anyone is welcome to attend and shop at the market, yet this program is catered for those that do not have easy access to produce.

“We’re really geared towards the people that – if they go to the farmers market and buy vegetables, that it will put strain on them financially,” said Theisen. “They have to decide whether or not they can have healthy food, or pay their rent.”

Most of southeast Fort Wayne is considered a food desert, or an area where access to affordable, healthy food is limited. Programs like Johnnie Mae Farm help with alleviating this widespread issue.

“One little farm isn’t solving all of the problems with food access here, but I think we’re helping make it just a little easier for some of the families here,” Theisen said.

New this year, the farm market is partnering with the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation for “Double Up Food Bucks.” Those who use SNAP or EBT cards can get twice the amount of produce that they normally pay for with this program.

Guests should also be on the lookout for various educational programs during their visit to the market. On Friday, the farm market will host a pop-up chess club for guests of all skill levels. Other programs include food sampling and lessons on bike repair.

More information about the Johnnie Mae Farm Market is available on their website.

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