08/01/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Pushing Produce into Urban Food Deserts

There is a new fruit stand on the corner near my home. I think it's terrific, but I'm pretty sure it doesn't belong there. The cart appeared on the day the New York Times announced a new citywide effort to encourage street vendors to bring fresh vegetables and fruit to low-income neighborhoods that have been called "food deserts" because of the predominance of fast-food outlets offering high-fat, high-sugar fare and the dearth of healthful culinary fare. I fortunately live in a neighborhood with several grocery stores offering an abundance of fresh, healthy whole foods, all within a few blocks of my home. There are fast-food outlets within walking distance, too, but they are farther away than the healthy food places.

The city, according to reports, has approved 1,000 new mobile food carts for neighborhoods in the five boroughs that have long been isolated from traditional supermarkets, grocery stores and farmers' markets offering fresh produce at reasonable prices. Read more....