Green Carts (Mobile Produce Vendors) in the Bronx—Optimally Positioned to Meet Neighborhood Fruit-and-Vegetable Needs?
Poor access to fresh produce likely contributes to disparities in obesity and diet-related diseases in the Bronx. New York City’s Green Cart program is a partial response to the problem. We evaluated this program (permitting street vendors to sell fresh produce) by canvassing the Bronx for carts, interviewing vendors, and analyzing their locations and food offerings. Green Carts were clustered in areas of probable high pedestrian traffic, covering only about 57% of needy areas by liberal estimates. Some carts sold outside allowed boundaries; a few sold sugary snacks. Vendor locations and their food offerings suggest possible areas for program improvement.
KeywordsLimited English Proficiency Fresh Produce Disadvantaged Neighborhood Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Side Street
The authors would like to thank Cassandra Flechsig from Karp Resources for providing data and reviewing this manuscript; Hope M. Spano from the Hispanic Center of Excellence at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Mary Huynh from the Bronx Careers in Health and Mentoring Program of Lehman College for financial support and intern coordination; the Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund for a grant to Montefiore Medical Center and the Street Vendor Project of the Urban Justice Center to support street outreach; Gustavo Hernandez, Monica Varona, Gillian Saunders, and Sushant Bhalla for performing data collection; Nandini Deb, MA of Montefiore Medical Center and Mahbooba Akhter Kabita of Westchester Square Partnership for translation of the vendor questionnaire into Bengali.
This publication was made possible by the CTSA Grant UL1 RR025750 and KL2 RR025749 and TL1 RR025748 from the National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), a component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and NIH Roadmap for Medical Research. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official view of the NCRR or NIH.
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