Eliminating Food Deserts

Essay by hkriletichCollege, UndergraduateA, October 2014

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�PAGE � �PAGE �1� Kriletich

Eliminating Food Deserts; Two Birds, One Stone

Heather Kriletich

Sociology 126: Urban Society

Erik Neilsen

March 6, 2013

I. Introduction

The term food desert is used to describe a city or community in which there is little or no access to fresh and affordable food. These "deserts" can be found in both urban and rural settings, however in this paper I will discuss the reasons why food deserts emerge in urban settings and what consequences come from this lack of access. Throughout this paper I will discuss how increased amounts of fresh and affordable produce, through the development or expansion of supermarkets or other stores, will not only help the health of those in food deserts but the economy in those deprived communities since the imbalance of healthy and affordable options will likely raise the rate of death and chronic health conditions in those areas.

Through the research of various food deserts, I will discuss how this topic plays a large part in the city of San Francisco, particularly in an area commonly referred to as Hunter's Point.

Food deserts began to arise during "white flight" starting in the mid-20th century. This was when a mass migration of middle-class people from mainly European ancestry moved away from the urban cities and toward suburbia. This migration left behind all those who could not afford to move out of the cities, the majority of which were recent immigrants who were racial minorities. Those who were stuck in the cities found their standard of living to decrease rapidly with insanitary and cramped housing and a decreasing amount of employment.

Since the mass movement of the middle-class, those left in the city were looked down upon. Manufacturers began looking for cheaper labor outside the country, so those left...