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June 16, 2009

Desert Blooms

NYC green cartNew York City took a baby step recently towards a state role in distributing healthy food. It significantly expanded a program to bring fruit and vegetable "carts" to low-income neighborhoods that lack good food options -- so-called "food deserts." And if the early response as reported by the NYT is any indication, the program looks to be a rip-roaring success:

...[O]n Wednesday afternoon, an urgent line formed at a cheery new produce cart that had materialized at the corner of East Fordham Road and Decatur Avenue near Fordham University in the Bronx. "These strawberries look great, and they’re a bargain," said Michelle Cruz, a 38-year-old graphic designer who lives nearby and found herself jostling other produce hounds under the cart’s jaunty green umbrellas.

The crowds who appear to be turning out for the carts should give some pause to elitist opponents of such programs who often doubt that low-income residents will put down their sodas and fast food and pick up apples and carrots.

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