Do farmer’s markets help cure obesity

We continue our look into Trust for America’s Health’s F as in Fat report. Today we address the following statement:

Improving access to affordable nutritious foods by providing incentives for grocery stores and farmers’ markets to locate in underserved communities


The first thing about this statement is its total lack of honesty. The statement speaks to urban areas as opposed to suburban or rural areas. There is a disparity in the amount of grocery stores in urban areas, so I can understand the possible limiting of healthy options for families.


From the article:

The scarcity of supermarkets in inner-city communities has serious consequences. After shelter, food is the second highest consumer expenditure. And because 25% of retail demand in inner cities is unmet, according to a 1998 study by the Boston Consulting Group, black neighborhoods lose billions of dollars at a faster rate than other communities. In addition, residents who choose to shop within the community spend their dollars inefficiently.


I would go along with this premise. If a business owner doesn’t want to open a store in a certain location they might try to squeeze as much money as possible from it.

The part of me that took the biggest exception to the statement is the farmer’s markets. Seriously. Why farmer’s markets? Some of the benefits:

  • Cheaper prices on produce
  • Most likely locally produced
  • Produce not usually available

But does this help eliminate obesity? Not really. The way to beat obesity is to limit the intake of food.

The number one focus should be on creating more resourceful grocery stores in urban areas.