More food stores open, but areas still lack access

by Naomi King Englar
More food stores open, but areas still lack access
Fresh fruits and vegetables are difficult to find for some New Orleans citizens. Many neighborhoods are still without full-service grocery stores, according to Prevention Research Center studies. Credit: Paula Burch-Celentano

Researchers and students at the Tulane Prevention Research Center mapped the Orleans Parish food environment this fall in their annual study of food stores and fast-food outlets. And for some of those stores, they also looked at what's on the shelves.

Researchers mapped where every fast-food restaurant and food store is located, from full-service grocery stores to corner stores. They also went inside some stores to survey the types and quantities of foods being sold on shelves and near cash registers and looked at availability and prices of an assortment of foods.

"We have found more than 25 new food stores in Orleans Parish for a total of 470 food stores in 2012," said Adrienne Rathert, program manager at the Tulane PRC. "But many neighborhoods are still without full-service grocery stores."

Rathert supervised nearly 20 public health master's students who were hired for the project. The students collected the food store and fast-food restaurant information, taking away many insights in the process.

"I was surprised to see how many people in Orleans Parish rely on smaller food such as corner stores and gas stations for purchasing food, and the distance many must travel to truly have access to healthy foods," said Kate Wobbekind, a Tulane public health graduate student.

Fellow graduate student Steven Trapasso saw how difficult it is for families in underserved areas to meet national guidelines for . He said his time on the project taught him to be open-minded and nonjudgmental of people who don't have the resources to buy on a regular basis.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

If you stock it, will they buy it?

Feb 14, 2012

(Medical Xpress) -- When it comes to offering healthy food in the local corner store, supply can impact demand, according to a study by University of Connecticut researchers. The study, published in the journal Public Health Nutrition, found that when corner stores stocke ...

Recommended for you

With kids in school, parents can work out

19 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Back-to-school time provides an opportunity for parents to develop an exercise plan that fits into the family schedules, an expert suggests.

Obama offers new accommodations on birth control

23 hours ago

The Obama administration will offer a new accommodation to religious nonprofits that object to covering birth control for their employees. The measure allows those groups to notify the government, rather than their insurance ...

Use a rule of thumb to control how much you drink

Aug 22, 2014

Sticking to a general rule of pouring just a half glass of wine limits the likelihood of overconsumption, even for men with a higher body mass index. That's the finding of a new Iowa State and Cornell University ...

User comments