Gilmer Free Press

Revised WIC food list includes more whole grains

The Free Press WV

New food options are now available to the 40,000 West Virginia participants in WIC, the Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children.

“We want to offer as many options as available, especially in the whole grain area,” said Heidi Staats, vendor unit manager for West Virginia WIC.

The approved list for WIC now includes additions of yogurt, canned and frozen fruits and vegetables, whole wheat pasta and corn tortillas.

There are wider varieties of whole wheat tortillas, whole grain rice and organic baby food.

More package sizes have been added for qualifying purchases of cheese, juice, bread and buns.

Additionally, the monthly benefits for purchases of fruits and vegetables for kids are now $9 monthly, an increase from the previous $8 monthly allotment.

The goal of the revisions, Staats said, was to better meet nutritional needs of WIC participants, offer more varieties of food and encourage healthier eating habits.

Changes took effect on October 01 after extensive consultations with manufacturers and grocery store distributors plus reviews of statewide WIC redemption patterns.

“The state WIC program actually starts revisions for food lists usually about a year ahead of time,” Staats said.

WIC benefits are available to women, children and families at up to 185 percent of the federal poverty level and are accepted at 265 grocery stores across West Virginia.

--> Monday, October 08, 2018
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