Sunday, July 5, 2009

Access to Affordable and Nutritious Food—Measuring and Understanding Food Deserts and Their Consequences: Report to Congress




"This report fills a request for a study of food deserts—areas with limited access to affordable and nutritious food—from the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008. The report summarizes findings of a national-level assessment of the extent and characteristics of food deserts, analysis of the consequences of food deserts, lessons learned from related Federal programs, and a discussion of policy options for alleviating the effects of food deserts. Overall, findings show that a small percentage of consumers are constrained in their ability to access affordable nutritious food because they live far from a supermarket or large grocery store and do not have easy access to transportation."

http://www.ers.usda.gov/Publications/AP/AP036/


This document is very dense with information about food deserts and their effects on people and communities as a whole. It addresses questions regarding whether individuals or communities have limited access to food. The report is organized into the following chapters:

  • The Extent of Limited Food Access in the U.S.
  • The Interaction of Neighborhood and Household Characteristics in Explaining Areas With Limited Access
  • Food Access and Its Relationship to Food Choice
  • The Economics of Supermarket and Grocery Store Location
  • Community Food Projects
  • Policy Options
  • Future Research Needs

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