Hoophouses for Health

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Purpose

Hoophouses for Health is a program designed to increase access to Good Food for vulnerable families while at the same time expanding the Good Food infrastructure and season extension capacity of Michigan farmers.

  • According to the Michigan Good Food Charter, “Good Food” is food that is:
    • Healthy: provides nourishment and enables people to thrive
    • Green: produced in a manner that is environmentally sustainable
    • Fair: no one along the supply chain was exploited for its creation
    • Affordable: all people have access to it

How It Works

Step 1: Farmers apply to the Michigan Farmers Market Association (MIFMA) to receive funding to build a new hoophouse.

Step 2: MIFMA works with community partner organizations, such as Head Start and Great Start Readiness Program agencies, to distribute vouchers to vulnerable families participating in their programming.  The Michigan State University Center for Regional Food Systems (MSU CRFS) helps establish a Farm to School relationship between a qualifying school and a participating farmer if desired.

Step 3: Families use the vouchers to buy produce from participating Hoophouses for Health farmers at local farmers markets, while farmers also provide free produce to schools.

Step 4: Farmers submit their vouchers and Farm to School delivery records to MIFMA to pay off their “loan.”

The Result: Families get access to fresh, healthy, Michigan foods, and farmers get a new hoophouse through a zero-interest, five year “loan” that they pay back in produce instead of cash.

Benefits

In 2015, 43 farmers participated in Hoophouses for Health at 15 farmers markets across the state of Michigan.

2015 Stats

 

Hoophouses for Health is a collaboration between the Michigan Farmers Market Association (MIFMA), the Michigan State University Center for Regional Food Systems (MSU CRFS) and the Michigan State University Department of Horticulture. Funding for Hoophouses for Health is provided by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

Project Partners

Like us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/hoophousesforhealth for recipes, shopping tips, farmer features, and more!

Program Information

To view more information about the program, hover over the Food Access tab at the top of the page.  Then place your mouse over Hoophouses for Health, and links to each section will be displayed.  You can also select the links below to visit the other pages.

Farmer Information

Community Partner Information

Farmers Market Information

School and Early Childhood Program Information

Participating Family Information

Resources

Online Application Form

Frequently Asked Questions

Participating Farmers Markets & Vendors 

Program Information Flyer

Webinars

What is a Hoophouse? (también disponible en español)

MSU Hoophouse Website

Hoophouse Funding Programs

Contact

For more information, please contact Tyler Vuillemot, the Hoophouses for Health Program Manager, at tyler@mifma.org or (517) 432-3381.

Para más información contacte a Yadira Perez yadira@mifma.org al (517) 432-3381.