Food Deserts

Over 23 Americans, including 6.5 million children, live in food deserts: areas without ready access to fresh, healthy, and affordable food.

These are usually low-income areas, dominated by minorities.  In fact, just eight percent of African Americans live in a census tract with a supermarket, compared to 31 percent of whites.

The effects of food deserts are devastating: they contribute to obesity and other illnesses, and they usually lack the resources to improve their situation.

Half of Atlanta’s lower class citizens live in a food desert.  According to a study by the Atlanta Regional Commission, high income citizens have equal access to fresh food and fast food, while only half of low income citizens have that access.

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These Atlanta neighborhoods, colored pink, meet the USDA definition of a food desert. Credit: USDA Food Desert Locator Mapping Tool

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