Healthy food to under served Detroit neighborhoods
If you live in Detroit, you know that we are some of the most under served produce consumers in the nation. Large chain grocers do not have store locations within the city boundaries, which is tragic for a city with a population of over 711,000 residents. Because of the intentional or unintentional food desert, Detroiters have to travel outside the city to get fresh produce and meats. The low-income central Detroit residents the produce market will serve have limited resources to travel to the surrounding suburban areas to shop. As a result, their options are limited to shopping at neighborhood markets that sell outdated foods and very limited fresh fruits and vegetable
For more information or to donate to the Peaches & Greens program please contact Liz Etim Phone: 313-870-9210 Location: 8838 Third Avenue Map
The community food insecurity is compounded by the absence of a quality supermarket within the central Detroit community and much of Detroit for that
matter. Lack of transportation for low-income individuals to healthy food sources exacerbates the problem as one out of two families in central Detroit lack private transportation. There is a “food crisis” in central Detroit. A recent food study done, Food Deserts, by Mari Gallagher, says that 92% of food stamp outlets in the City of Detroit are liquor stores, gas stations or pharmacies. This is what is nearby for those who do not have a car. A vast majority of food stores in our community are convenience stores, selling primarily alcohol or snack foods. Then there are gas stations who offer a limited food line (nothing fresh) at outrageous prices.
Pharmacies such as CVS sell a more expanded food line including dairy, but do not stock fresh produce. These foods are rarely promoted within the stores as healthier options, or offered at sale prices. Residents complain there is never fresh milk in the neighborhood. You purchase it from the corner store and it goes bad the next day. This also applies to the independent grocery stores that sell low quality goods throughout the stores, but are successful because residents have no other choice but to patronize these establishments. Therefore, residents substantially rely on convenience stores for basic food needs. This food crisis prevents residents from eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, which would help prevent such serious health issues as Type II diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers. Lack of accessibility can have a real impact on people’s diets and their long-term health.
You purchase it from the corner store and it goes bad the next day. This also applies to the independent grocery stores that sell low quality goods throughout the stores, but are successful because residents have no other choice but to patronize these establishments. Therefore, residents substantially rely on convenience stores for basic food needs. This food crisis prevents residents from eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, which would help prevent such serious health issues as Type II diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers. Lack of accessibility can have a real impact on people’s diets and their long-term health.
The goal of the Healthy Neighborhoods Initiative is to provide families in the central Woodward community greater access to quality produce while promoting healthy food choices. The promotion of produce and healthy food is a proactive step towards helping to improve the quality of life for children in the community by providing resources and /or amenities that are presently lacking. Children who eat right do better academically, have more energy, are healthier and are not as high a risk for lead poisoning. We believe that healthy food, good eating habits and access to produce are all foundational to healthy and holistic development of children and even healthy and holistic development of a neighborhood.
The produce market, Peaches and Greens, which opened in the fall of 2008, provides community residents the opportunity to have a safe, culturally acceptable, nutritionally adequate diet through a sustainable food system that maximizes community self-reliance. We are excited about the possibilities the market and the truck will bring to the central Detroit area.
- To provide access to low-cost fruits and vegetables through a produce truck and store which are clean and safe.
- To teach gardening, nutrition and food development to children and teens through the development and nurturing of urban gardens in the community.
- To empower local gardeners to become vendors to the produce market thereby earning income from their gardening.
With a vast number of vacant lots in our community, CDC is attempting to utilize these open spaces for growth. We currently have two community gardens which empowers our children to cultivate fruits and vegetables. These gardens are populating Peaches and Greens with locally grown produce, thus providing another neighborhood enterprise.
Feel free to email us if you’d like to volunteer your green thumb to one of these ventures!
- Seeds of Change: How 3 Moms Provide Produce to Needy Families: READ ARTICLE
- Imagining Detroit by Mark Bittman of The New York Times: READ ARTICLE
- Mission Accomplished: Peaches and Greens READ ARTICLE
- Detroit tries peddling produce like ice cream READ ARTICLE
- One Solution to Health Care – Healthy Food Where It’s Needed READ ARTICLE