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Fresh Produce for Underserved Communities

A webinar about healthy food options

Food & Beverages

Eating healthier foods — including more fresh fruits and vegetables — helps to reduce the risk of obesity and chronic disease. Families and children from low-income communities and communities of color are less likely to have diets that meet nutrition guidelines. Studies show that residents of rural areas, low-income neighborhoods, and communities of color have less access to supermarkets and large grocery stores and the fresh produce they sell.

Community public health advocates and policymakers can use multiple approaches to fulfill this need for fresh produce in underserved communities. They can work with local agencies to attract full-service grocery stores. They can also support purveyors of fresh produce, often grown locally, by establishing favorable policies for farmers’ markets and mobile produce carts. The purpose of this webinar was to discuss the latter two types of policies, which bring fresh produce directly into underserved neighborhoods and create business opportunities for community members.

Our Model Land Use Protections for Farmers’ Markets provides policy language that creates more opportunities for farmers’ markets and ensures their long-term viability as a community institution. Model Produce Cart Ordinance, inspired by New York City’s Green Cart program and other mobile vending ordinances around the country, is a cost-effective and efficient means of increasing residents’ access to fresh produce. It creates a streamlined permit program for the sale of fresh whole fruits and vegetables from sidewalk carts.

Technical Assistance Available!Are you interested in passing a farmers' market or mobile vending policy using one of NPLAN's models? Curious about a concept discussed during the webinar? Contact us for technical assistance.

Fresh Produce for Underserved Communities WebinarIn February 2010, we hosted a training on farmers' market and mobile vending policies that can improve access to fresh food in communities. This webinar follows on our Fall 2009 community garden policy webinar, which also provided ideas and resources for expanding fresh produce access.

Webinar PresentationsEach presentation is available in the downloads section below.