April 19, 2013 |
Corner stores are a staple in poor neighborhoods, where large supermarkets find it economically unfeasible to flourish. The problem has long been that small groceries aren't known for fresh fruits and vegetables. That has left an impoverished population bereft of good food, compelled to live in so-called food deserts. But Philadelphia's Food Trust, a nationally recognized nonprofit dedicated to ensuring that everyone has access to nutritious food, has been working to change that.
August 16, 2012 |
As the sun set Thursday evening over Germantown Avenue, hungry visitors formed lines dozens deep for local food of all types: caramel ice cream, biscuit sandwiches, pizza baked in a mobile oven. The event, dubbed the "Mount Airy Edition," was the seventh in the Night Market Philadelphia series put on by the Food Trust, a city nonprofit. Other Night Market events have taken place in East Passyunk, Chinatown, and University City. Mount Airy, which hosted a Night Market last August, was the first repeat location.
July 29, 2011 |
IN the food deserts of Philadelphia's low-income minority neighborhoods, where supermarkets are few and far between, the typical corner store that residents rely on for groceries has been a fat fortress, a high-carb castle, a heart-unhealthy haven for high-fructose corn-syrup drinks masquerading as "10 percent real fruit juice. " But today, if you walk into any one of 580 Philadelphia corner groceries, the first thing that hits you is that this is not your mom and pop's mom-and-pop store.
February 15, 2014 |
Low-income America is rife with food deserts, where supermarkets are scarce and good food so rare that people have little choice but to shop in corner stores, whose processed and highly caloric foods contribute to obesity. Build a decent supermarket with good, fresh produce, social scientists have said, and residents will flock to the oasis, their neighborhood a desert no more and their health much improved. That kind of thinking inspired the creation of a Fresh Grocer store in North Philadelphia, opened to great fanfare - including an appearance by Michelle Obama - on North Broad Street near Temple University in 2009.
September 15, 2011
People who are eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program - SNAP, formerly known as food stamps - have two ways to make the most of their purchasing power. One is Philly Food Bucks, a program of the Food Trust. Shoppers who spend $5 on produce at one of the more than 25 farmer's markets operated by the Food Trust get a $2 Philly Food Buck in return, on the spot. A list of those markets is at www.thefoodtrust.org . Or call the Food Trust at 215-575-0444. The other program, Double Dollars, is available only at the Fair Food Farmstand in the Reading Terminal Market.
July 5, 2010 |
In the bleak cityscape of Philadelphia's poorer neighborhoods, the corner store is both convenience and curse, stocking milk and cheese, as well as junk food and cigarettes. Thanks to federal stimulus money recently pumped into the city, such stores may also start carrying healthier foods, like fresh produce. In March, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced awards of more than $372 million to 44 communities to combat obesity and smoking. Philadelphia's share - $15 million to battle obesity and $10.4 million toward smoking cessation over two years - was disbursed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
August 13, 2012 |
"So has it been a good experience?" U.S. Department of Agriculture official Joani Walsh asked, snacking on cherry tomatoes as an elderly woman reached around her for the white sweet corn stacked high on the table. As Walsh toured Clark Park Farmers' Market on Saturday, she was greeted with smiles and nods of approval. She met various growers - the high school students experimenting with urban farming, the owner of a year-old mushroom farm - and talked with various customers, including a mother of four who drives from the suburbs several times a month and a local mother of seven who makes the short walk twice a week.
August 6, 2010 |
On Thursdays, fresh fruit is now only steps away from the home of Dominique Wilder, 38, a mother of four in the Norris Square community of North Philadelphia. A tiny farmers market opened at Susquehanna Avenue and North Howard Street on Thursday, offering fresh produce - from apples to zucchini - to a community that does not have much access to healthy groceries. "Several markets have left the neighborhood in the last few years. It's impossible to get fresh products around here," Wilder said.
August 26, 2011 |
Philly Food Bucks, a pilot program aimed at getting food stamp recipients to buy more fresh produce at neighborhood farmers' markets, has proved incredibly successful, according to figures released Thursday by the city Department of Public Health, which sponsors the program as part of its efforts to combat obesity. Food bucks "make my food dollars go further," said Bijou McIntosh, 28, who was shopping near her home Thursday at the Clark Park market. "This food is healthier, and it tastes better," said McIntosh, her bag stuffed with parsley, bread, onions, potatoes, and chicken.