Thursday, August 21, 2014

Frightening new study should keep you out of the corner stores

When Philabundance was planning to bring the Fare & Square grocery store to Chester, our location was justified because we are a food desert. Mayor Wendell Butler said he doesn’t see anyone starving and I said there are multiple grocery stores within a 3 mile radius. So how do you define ‘Food Desert’?

It’s loosely defined as a low income, highly populated area that doesn’t have a grocery store within a stone’s throw. In its place are fast food, Chinese food, steak and hoagie shops, pizza, and corner stores that encourage bad eating habits and don’t provide fresh fruit and veggies.

Sunday’s Philadelphia Inquirer published a first ever study that highlights frightening dangers in food deserts that is the most convincing argument to the importance of access to ‘real’ grocery stores. Chester is in a much better position now that Fare & Square and Bottom Dollar came to the city. 

Here’s a few quotes from the article:
  • Corner stores and small supermarkets that feed vast swaths of impoverished Philadelphia offer bacteria-laced foods in unhealthy conditions that can lead to foodborne illness
  • "Potatoes and baby food are moldy, lettuce is rotten, and the mice are having a good time in boxes of noodles,"
  • It wasn't uncommon to see mice in stores, which is why many corner stores keep cats, who carry their own germs
  • When they are stuck with bad food, poor people will wash slime off lunch meats, cut mold from cheese and bread, slice off rotten parts of fruit, then simply eat what's left
 Click HERE for the full article

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