Baltimore gets food czar
B'more healthy: Baltimore has hired a food policy coordinator, making the city one of the first with a paid "food czar" -- although taxpayers aren't paying her salary, a coalition of nonprofits are, to the tune of just 30 hours a week. Holly Freishtat is charged with "getting more healthy food on the tables of the people who need it," but she has a tough row to hoe, with no budget and no actual power to do so. As the article puts it, "no matter how impressive her title, Freishtat can't just talk Safeway
into opening a supermarket in the blighted inner city. Nor can she
persuade corner store owners to change a business model that's worked
for decades" -- one shop owner complained that stocking fresh fruits and vegetables had been a loss for him. Meanwhile, Baltimore's much-touted "virtual supermarket" program, in which residents of food deserts order food online for delivery to a local library, has been slow to take off. (Associated Press/SF Chronicle) Here's a thought: do any cities offer a "fresh food" shuttle, in which a hired van or bus could take elderly or non-car-owning residents food-shopping at a decent grocery store once a week?
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