|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 23, 2009
Metropolitan Hospital Center Launches Farmers Market
Market will feature fresh produce and locally-made goods
New York, NY -Metropolitan Hospital Center and Harvest Home Farmers Market, Inc. are pleased to announce the Grand Opening of the Harvest Home Metropolitan Farmers Market. The market will feature fresh produce from local farmers in an effort to promote affordable healthy dietary options for Metropolitan Hospital patients, employees and residents of the East Harlem and Upper East Side communities.
The Grand Opening will take place on Friday, July 24 at 11:00 AM. The market will run every Friday from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm through November 20th, on East 99th Street between Second and Third Avenues. Spearheaded by the Metropolitan Hospital Community Advisory Board, the market will be operated by Harvest Home Farmers Market, Inc., an East Harlem-based non-profit organization working to expand access to markets.
“Metropolitan Hospital is committed to promoting healthy food choices and eliminating barriers to good health,” said Meryl Weinberg, Executive Director of Metropolitan Hospital. “The farmers market provides us with a wonderful opportunity to make quality fruits and vegetables available to our neighbors. We are also excited about the ability to offer medical screenings and health information to shoppers.”
“The traditional farmers market at Metropolitan Hospital is part of our ongoing effort to expand open air markets once found mostly in upscale Manhattan neighborhoods and other communities throughout New York City,” added Maritza Owens, CEO of Harvest Home. “Working in partnership with our network of local farmers, we will help ensure the availability of safe, fresh, nutritious and affordable food for East Harlem residents, especially low-income residents, senior citizens and children.”
Participants in the Women, Infants, Children's (WIC) program and Senior Citizens' Meals Programs can redeem New York State Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) checks to purchase their produce. In addition, shoppers who receive “Health Bucks” coupons from the NYC Department of Health District Public Health Offices are encouraged to use these $2 coupons at participating markets. The farmers market also accepts Electronic Benefit Transfer/Food Stamps (EBT) and cash.
Metropolitan Hospital Center (MHC) is the community hospital of choice for residents of East Harlem, northern Manhattan and neighboring communities. Metropolitan provides culturally-sensitive care in a welcoming and hospitable setting, emphasizing primary care medicine and utilizing the latest advances in medical science. At Metropolitan, each patient feels personally cared for and is treated with dignity and respect. Since its founding in 1875, Metropolitan Hospital has been affiliated with New York Medical College, representing the oldest partnership between a hospital and a private medical school in the United States. Metropolitan Hospital Center is part of the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC), the largest municipal hospital and health care system in the country.
Harvest Home Farmers Market, Inc., a non-profit located within the historic New York City neighborhood of East Harlem also known as El Barrio. Its mission is to encourage economic opportunities in communities by bringing fresh produce and locally-made goods to the neighborhoods they serve. HHFM has been in operation since 1993. This year, Harvest Home will operate13 farmers markets-in East Harlem; in Mott Haven, Highbridge/Grand Concourse, Coop City, Castle Hill and Morris Park in the Bronx; and Sunset Park in Brooklyn-and a youth farmstand at the Children's Storefront school on East 129th Street.