Roughly one in two Pittsburgh residents lacks access to fresh, nutritious food. A champion in sports and industry, Pittsburgh unfortunately also leads the nation in food deserts and obesity. Thousands of people in Allegheny County also lack access to healthy food.
Along with Just Harvest’s research on food deserts – areas where residents don’t have ready access to supermarkets and fresh food – our Fresh Access, Fresh Corners, and food stamps assistance programs directly improve the ability of our low-income neighbors to put healthy food on the table.
We also continue to work – as we have for decades – with city and county officials, entrepreneurs, and organizational allies to develop local policies and incentives to improve healthy food access in Allegheny County. These range from local government budget priorities and formal food policies to issues of CDBG spending, land use and zoning for urban agriculture, food deserts, and the quality of summer meals.
Access, however, also means being able to afford the produce that is available. Our food stamps assistance program and our Fresh Access and Food Bucks incentive program help low-income households access fresh, healthy food. Fresh Access also supports regional farms and farmers markets, a great source of locally-grown, nutritious food.