Can Baltimore Banish Food Deserts?

Whether you call them “food swamps,” “food deserts,” or “Healthy Food Priority Areas,” there’s an undeniable need for more nutritious food in America’s inner cities.
In Baltimore—where half of all low-income residents are obese—researchers and policymakers are testing a clutch of potential solutions, and several are receiving city government grants this year.
Distribution is key. Small urban stores often can’t justify ordering perishables produce, and distributors aren’t incentivized to fill small orders. To help fill the gap, Loyola University's FreshCrate program distributes fresh produce at-cost to a small cohort of local stores.
Another project found that simply creating nicer-looking menus increased sales of healthier options.

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