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State Initiatives Supporting Healthier Food Retail: An Overview of the National Landscape

  • April 27, 2012


    Public Health, Primary Care, Community

    Shared By: Erin Ellingwood

    Topic(s): Eating Healthy, Policy, Environmental Systems Change

    Minimum Time Commitment: 6 Months to 1 Year

    Reach: State

    Minimum Cost to Implement: Nominal

Resource Overview

From the Report Summary: In recent years, leading public health authorities have recommended improving the retail food environment to make healthier foods more accessible among underserved populations. This is one among a portfolio of strategies that can support individuals and families in improving diet and may lead to preventing or reducing obesity.

To implement this strategy, some states have enacted legislation to attract full-service grocery stores and supermarkets to underserved communities and to improve the quality of the foods that are sold at small corner stores (collectively referred to as “healthier food retail legislation” in this document). In addition to the health benefits of such initiatives, communities may realize economic benefits as well, including job creation and community-wide revitalization. Food retail outlets, such as grocery stores and supermarkets, can serve as “anchors” to other types of commercial development and may increase retail activity, employment rates, and property values in surrounding neighborhoods.

How to Use This Resource: This document, published by the CDC, provides public health practitioners, their partners, and policy makers with useful information about the rationale for and characteristics of healthier food retail legislation enacted in the last decade. Action steps that public health practitioners can use to support Healthier Food Retail (HFR) initiatives in their state are provided, as well as legislative data and other resources.

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