Joplin Empire Market expanding kids meal program

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JOPLIN, Mo. — The Joplin Empire Market is expanding its “Empire Sprouts kids meal program.”

The market is receiving a $45,000 matching grant from the Missouri Department of Agriculture to address food insecurity.

The market will be purchasing a commercial prep kitchen so it can expand its free kids meals program that started during the pandemic.

Right now they make 20 to 40 free meals a week and they hope to double that with the new kitchen.

“We’re really excited to start this project. It’s been something weve been dreaming about for a long time now. We think this will be a really great addition to the market and help us be able to grow and continue to give back to the community,” said Lindsay Gagnon, Joplin Empire Market Director.

Twelve projects across missouri are being funded by the “Food Insecure Urban Agriculture Matching Grant.”

The market expansion must be completed by April 1, 2022.

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