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Florida Impact to End Hunger is dedicated to advancing health equity by ending hunger for all Floridians. We mobilize communities to maximize access to federal, state, and local food and nutrition programs with a focus on Florida’s most vulnerable populations.
Since 1979, Florida Impact to End Hunger has helped community leaders secure more responsive public programs and policies to address hunger.
In 2018, Florida Impact to End Hunger opened a new chapter in its work to fight hunger, by launching a healthy corner store project in Miami Gardens.
Healthy corner stores represent an opportunity to bring higher nutrition foods into an existing food system in areas in need. Many communities rely on small retailers as their primary source of food.
Unfortunately, these stores are often full of cheap, unhealthy choices and little to no fresh options. Poor diet, and other social determinants of health, may lead to chronic disease and other negative health outcomes.
By bringing nutritious options into corner stores, shoppers have the option to make healthier choices. Effective branding and partnerships can help encourage this choice, by educating and supporting individuals and families on proper nutrition.
Current Research Examples
There is abundant research available to demonstrate the negative impacts of corner stores on diet, and the positive impacts of healthy retail interventions.
→ Many children in minority or low-income urban communities have abundant access to unhealthy foods at local corner stores. These low-nutritive snacks contribute a significant caloric intake to a child’s daily diet. This can undermine much of the positive impact from healthier school meals. Obesity interventions must consider corner stores when analyzing children’s food environment. Read Snacking in Children: The Role of Urban Corner Stores for more information.
→ Obesity in the United States is known to significantly impact minority populations. Hispanic students are more likely to be in schools surrounded by convenience stores and other unhealthy food retailers, than other racial/ethnic groups in the United States. Read Disparities in the food environment surrounding US middle and high schools for more information.
→ Black and lower-income communities have been found to have lower availability of healthy foods than white and higher-income communities. This has been caused by differences in neighborhood stores types, and food types within those stores. Read Neighborhood Characteristics and Availability of Healthy Foods in Baltimore for more information.
→ Individuals with better access to supermarkets and more limited access to convenience stores typically have healthier diets and lower levels of obesity. Read Neighborhood environments: disparities in access to healthy foods in the U.S. for more information.
→ Low-income neighborhoods, African neighborhoods, and Hispanic neighborhoods have fewer chain supermarkets than middle-income neighborhoods, White neighborhoods, and non-Hispanic neighborhoods, respectively. Read Food store availability and neighborhood characteristics in the United States for more information.
→ Healthy retail projects at small stores around the world, in both urban and rural settings, have been shown to be effective at increasing healthy food availability, healthy food sales, consumer psychosocial impact, and consumer behavioral impact. Although specific strategies, such as product selection, promotion, and community engagement may vary from store-to-store, the common goals and positive outcomes are generally consistent. Read Interventions in Small Food Stores to Change the Food Environment, Improve Diet, and Reduce Risk of Chronic Disease for more information.