Thursday, July 21, 2011

Building an Oasis in America’s Food Deserts

I have no idea how this happened. Lady M showed up for yesterday’s Healthy Food Financing Initiative still wearing her spa robe.



ar01dDisposable spa robes

I know the esthetician had just finished up with the fresh sharpie brows, butt still, she had plenty of time to change.


She just has so much on her mind these days. I’m not overly concerned, because I know that all of our supportive media will just speculate on who Lady M’s newest, edgy designer is. Butt seriously, I’m beginning to think Lady M really is sacrificing too much for the country. She desperately needs a vacation and, so far, we don’t have one scheduled for at least another 2 weeks.

Anyway: yesterday was about the 200th kickoff for one of Lady M’s Healthy Food Initiatives. This time it was to announce that Walmart, Supervalu and Walgreens have been “persuaded” (via grants) to build some new stores and to offer more fresh produce and organic leafy green vegetables in existing stores located in officially designated “food deserts.”

The Food desert map (interactive version below, compliments of Slate) was developed by the USDA in concert with the US Census – because we don’t have any other pressing problems to spend American’s tax dollars on.

Screenshot Studio capture #150Here’s a pocket version, so you can keep it with you at all times

I’m sure it will be a very successful program. Although I don’t think we should expect miracles. Here’s Lady M greeting a produce manager from one of the participating food desert stores to her Big White meeting:


I’m beginning to wonder if just having access to fresh produce is going to solve the “epidemic of childhood obesity.”

Never-the-less, as Lady M so succinctly put it – paraphrasing no lesser illuminati than Joey B himself:–

“This is a big deal.  It is a really big deal.  I think our Vice President put it better but I’m not going to use his words.  (Laughter.)  This is a really big deal.  (Laughter.) ”

And believe me, it really is a big effing deal: Lady M has managed to wrangle federal funds for her food-desert development to the tune of $35 million in grants (give-aways) this year to make healthy food available to more Americans. An additional $330 million has been earmarked for give-aways (grants) to participating food stores in 2012. Assuming, of course, that the US Money Printing and Benevolent Society is still in business.

As Lady M explained, “… the plan is to use that money to leverage hundreds of millions more from the private and nonprofit sectors.” Jesse Jackson, while not directly involved in the HFFI, can be credited with inventing the whole concept of leveraging private and nonprofit sectors.


Linked By: Adrienne’s Corner, and Chickaboomer, Thanks!