Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and Brooklyn community organizer and food justice advocate Mark Winston Griffith discuss the crisis of “food deserts” – local communities where it’s hard to get fresh, healthy food – and what’s being done to improve the way New Yorkers eat.

You can view Scott Stringer’s plan for sustainable food in New York City here.


Mark Winston Griffith and Scott M. Stringer

Comments [11]


JP from NJ

It's not about lobbyists etc - it is about consumers who don't want to accept what the lobbyists and their industries want to impose on us - consumers can organize, form farm co-ops, food co-ops - is was done in the 60s and 70s and it can be done again. It is being done again. I get the bulk of what I consume directly from farmers via buying club or farmer's market. There are also CSAs - some organized by churches - we are NOT totally subject to Washington politics!

Mar. 11 2010 03:22 PM
JP from NJ

I applaud everyone here for fighting the good fight. But until lobbying of local and federal government is completly outlawed for all, by all, bad stuff will continue to be subsidized and given preferential treatment while good stuff will be ignored and pushed back to the end of the line. This is nothing new in American history but it is insanely out of control in these modern times. Political races need to be publicly funded and all lobbying needs to be outlawed before we can take back our country from those that don’t speak for we the people. Oh and Tea baggers are not speaking for we the people… They are nothing but lobbyist in sheep’s wool…

Mar. 10 2010 12:33 PM
Rachel Crystal from Manhattan

if the education of healthy food is the key to success, then the quality of food in the public school system must be the first priority.

An article on the front page of the New York Times, a few months ago, disclosed the fact that "dog food" grade meat (meaning the inclusion of fat scraps prone to ecoli) is allowed into the public school systems. Parents at P.S. 84 have made a plea to stop this grade of meat into the school. It's literally dangerous to all, and the laws pertaining to food quality are completely outdated. We cannot even pay ourselves to "upgrade" the meat ourselves, because an completely out-dated list of pre-approved vendors eliminates the possibility of improvement.

My next step will be to contact the author of the NYT article, as well as Scott Stringer. Can you imagine how many children are affected?

Its extremely unfortunate.

Sincerely, Rachel Crystal

Mar. 10 2010 12:09 PM

Justine - please always modify the word livestock with something like CAFO or Industrial - beef on small farms that graze on grass and don't get supplements or grain don't have digestive issues that cause that methane - but the do poop and enrich the soil they are grazing. And chickens eat the grubs on tehir poop and you should see what a difference that makes to the eggs. Joel Salatin can tell you about all this. People can and do organize - I remember when this started in the 60s and 70s - co-ops brought fresh, affordable food to members.

Mar. 10 2010 12:08 PM
Jasmine from Fort Greene, brooklyn

I used to think people who claimed there were no healthy food options in some neighborhoods were making excuses for the residents' unhealthy lifestyle and choices.
UNTIL I moved to Bed-Sty area and am astonished by lack of decent produce in the community.
There aren't any convenient options.
We often grocery shop in Manhattan and schelp stuff back on subway.

Mar. 10 2010 12:05 PM
anonymous from manhattan

can't wait for the clinton hill/fort greene food coop to open, i am a member of the park slope coop now and amd looking forward to doing my shopping closer to home as well as supporting my own community.

Mar. 10 2010 11:59 AM
kate from washington heights

I think you are all missing the obvious point that fruits and vegetables are not as enjoyable to eat as junk food. Just because some kids bring vegetables home does not mean people will eat them.

Mar. 10 2010 11:58 AM

If you're interested in these issues, check out the Foodprint NYC, brought to you by the New York Foodprint Alliance. The resolution acknowledges the climate impacts of our food choices, and calls for local, plant-based foods to be made available to all New Yorkers, especially those in city-run institutions.

As part of Brighter Green's initiative on Food and Equity, we have put together a series of presentations that tackle the ecological consequences of our food choices. While eating local and organic are important ways to reduce your carbon footprint, reducing levels of meat and dairy consumption is also important. According to the UN. 18% of all human caused greenhouse gas emissions come from the livestock sector - that's more than all forms of transportation combined.

For a PDF of the presentation:

Mar. 10 2010 11:55 AM
JP from NJ

If you go to any supermarket outside of any city in the suburbs, the produce department by far takes up the most floor space then any other section. Then it’s the meat department. Then the dairy section. Dry and canned food fills up the middle in specialized sections. This is true regardless the size of the store. Why is this not true in cities, regardless of neighborhood income?

Also, local farms are not harvesting food 365 days a year (harvest seasons are actually quite short) yet people do need and eat food all year round. How does scaling up local farming create more food all year round?

Mar. 10 2010 11:53 AM
Sarah from Weston CT

Would Mr. Stringer be so good as to say "Type 2 diabetes" rather than just "diabetes" we he is talking about making bad food choices and the health consequences. All the kids living with Type 1 diabetes, such as my daughter who was dxd at 4, should not be clumped into the "poor food choice" camp for their auto-immune disease.

Mar. 10 2010 11:48 AM
Robert from NYC

If they are interested in the Bronx too I can recommend an area where they can start, around Lincoln Hospital. My mom lives one block north of the hospital and between 149th and 150th sts on Morris Avenue is the only fruit and vegetable vendor whose produce is of the worst quality. There no other recourse but to go blocks away to Supermarkets that don't have much better products. It's really a shame. There is a Farmer's Market outside the hospital during summer months a few days a week but the produce there is way out of the price range of the community. There's a challenge for your guests.

Mar. 10 2010 10:28 AM

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