I live in a community that has a lot of poverty. When we attended the Healthy Eating Active Living Cities Workshop a few months ago, we learned the locations of all the food deserts in our city.
An area is considered a food desert when there is no grocery store within a certain radius.
One of the largest ones is downtown. Standing right next to downtown is a church that occupies an old Safeway building. What I never understood was why that building couldn't be used as a grocery store again. In some of the other food deserts there are also buildings that once housed grocery stores but now house other businesses like furniture stores. Safeway has since moved out to bigger and better properties in other areas of the city.
So why haven't new grocery stores been able to come in to those areas? Because they were once owned by supermarket giant, Safeway, and now Safeway has put deed restrictions on those sites barring any future grocery store from using the property. In some instances, due to site limitations and availability these are the only places a grocery store could feasibly be located. So in the name of profits, Safeway has decided to create food deserts in my city. They put their profits above the health of our community, about the health of children.
This just drives home my commitment to no longer buy food from grocery stores.