retail news in context, analysis with attitude

• The Chicago Sun Times reports that the Windy City "is reaping the benefits of the Obama administration’s healthy-food initiatives, announcing Friday a partnership between the CTA and a non-profit to bring fruits and vegetables to Chicago’s South Side 'food deserts,' which officials said will double the number of people now being served."

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a $45,000 grant last week to Fresh Moves, which will now add a second bus to its existing efforts to bring fresh fruits and vegetables to under-served communities.

• The Washington Post has a story about how Philadelphia - which has "the highest obesity rate and poorest population of America’s big cities" - also has " an ambitious plan ... to put healthy food on every table."

The city is spending $900,000 to encourage 632 corner stores to invest in the sale of healthier foods. According to the story, "The city has recruited 632 corner stores — of 2,500 overall — to its Get Healthy Philly initiative. Of those, 122 have gotten more intensive support, been supplied with new fridges to store produce and connected with wholesalers from whom they can buy at lower prices. It is also working with schools to improve nutrition and helping neighborhoods launch farmers markets, a multifaceted approach officials hope will improve public health."
KC's View:
As someone said in one of these stories, just because one lives next to a Mercedes dealership doesn't mean they are going to buy a Mercedes.

There is no guarantee that this is going to work. But that said, obesity and poor health tend to be a bigger problem in poor neighborhoods than wealthy neighborhoods, and I've heard enough people say that this is both an economic and national security crisis to believe it.