Food is a basic human need, yet access to healthy and affordable food is not universal. In many underrepresented communities, residents face significant barriers to obtaining fresh and nutritious food at an affordable price, this is often referred to as a food desert. In this blog, we will discuss what food deserts are, how they affect the residents of South Los Angeles, and what steps can be taken to address this pressing issue.
- What are Food Deserts?
- Food Deserts and Los Angeles
- Solutions for Food Deserts in South Los Angeles
What are Food Deserts?
A food desert is a geographic area where access to fresh, healthy, affordable food is limited, often due to the absence of supermarkets or other sources of fresh produce. Food deserts are more common in low-income and minority neighborhoods, where residents may lack transportation or have limited financial resources, limiting their access to travel.
Food Deserts and Los Angeles
According to the Los Angeles Food Policy Council, more than 1 million people in Los Angeles County live in areas with limited access to healthy, affordable food. In South Los Angeles, specifically, residents have significantly fewer grocery stores and supermarkets than other parts of the city. Instead, many rely on corner stores, fast-food restaurants, and other unhealthy food options. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, this lack of access to fresh produce and healthy food contributes to higher diet-related illnesses (such as obesity and diabetes) in the community.
Solutions for Food Deserts in Los Angeles
To combat food deserts in Los Angeles, several programs have been launched to increase access to healthy food. One such program is the Lily of the Nile, which partners with farmers and food vendors to combat food disparity.
Lily of the Nile will be hosting an event on May 24 from 4-6 PM to address the need for grocery stores and other essential resources in the community.
Food deserts in South Los Angeles represent a significant challenge. However, through community-driven initiatives and policy changes, it is possible to increase access to healthy, affordable food options. By advocating for policy changes, we can work towards a future where fresh produce and nutritious food are accessible to all residents of South Los Angeles.