The concept is simple: Instead of prescribing medication to people sickened with diet-related disease, we work with healthcare providers to literally write prescriptions for fruits and vegetables, which patients redeem at farmers markets. Since we launched this program in 2010, over 8,400 people in 10 states have redeemed $600,000 on produce. That’s a lot of ounces of prevention.
We recently shot a short video about this program’s growing success in DC. Since 2012, we’ve been partnering with DC Greens and Unity Health Care to offer these prescriptions to low-income residents in the nation’s capital. So far, 650 families there have completed the program, redeeming $102,527 worth of fresh produce. And the outcomes are excellent: fully 50% of patients have dropped their BMI.
And now we’re not just running these produce-prescription programs ourselves. We literally wrote the book on them, and we’re giving it away for free. In a desire to see this innovative idea blossom across the country, we just released a 100+ page toolkit that teaches partners nationwide how to launch, run and grow these programs themselves. In just a month, it’s already been downloaded over 5,000 times.