NYC's Fresh Bodegas Program Stocks Bed-Stuy Bodegas With Affordable, Local Produce


Photo: hi-lo under a Creative Commons license.

Last October, Matt told us about about GrowNYC's Fresh Bodega's program, designed to bring fresh produce to bodegas in Brooklyn's Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood. Now, four bodegas and an upstate farm have been selected by the non-profit matchmaker, and the locally grown fresh fruit and veggies will be coming in this summer.In many New York neighborhoods, bodegas are the only accessible option for food shopping. They are filled with junk food, soda, and alcohol, and have very limited supplies of fresh fruits and vegetables. There's a direct link between this lack and NYC's high obesity rates.

That's where Fresh Bodegas comes in. Declaring that the problem is one of distribution, not supply, the program has arranged for fresh fruit and juice to be provided by upstate New York farm Red Jacket Orchards, Gothamist reported. Produce will come from Wholesale Green Market, in the Bronx.

But Fresh Bodegas isn't just bringing in healthy food. It's also providing the infrastructure that will allow bodegas to sell the produce: refrigerators that are built for fruits and vegetables, not soda cans and cases of beer. And that's not all, they say:

In addition to providing refrigeration, the project aims to educate shop owners on food handling and sustainable agriculture, ever strengthening the connection between upstate producers and our city's many consumers. Hopefully the success of this pilot distribution route will allow the Fresh Bodegas project to expand to more neighborhoods where under-resourced bodegas are calling for fresh, local produce.

Check out the video Fresh Bodegas made to explain their mission:

Fresh Bodegas from GrowNYC on Vimeo.

To start off, the program will supply four bodegas: Bedford Express Deli at 1043 Bedford Ave, 5J Deli Grocery Corp at 925 Marcy Ave, Greene Ave Supermarket at 664 Greene Ave, and Si Grocery at 1082 DeKalb Ave. Want to see the project get bigger and better? Donate to Fresh Bodegas.

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More ways NYC is getting healthy:
New York City Gets Serious About Local, Sustainable Food
Mayor Bloomberg Takes a Swing at Sugar-Sweetened Beverage
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