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Rural Grocery Initiative

Center for Healthy Food Access

Recognizing that access to healthy food is often a challenge, particularly for people living in low-income neighborhoods, communities of color and rural areas, K-State’s Center for Engagement and Community Development (CECD) and the department of sociology, in partnership with The Food Trust and a diverse group of partners from across the country, is launching a national collaborative effort – the Center for Healthy Food Access – to help organizations and businesses increase access to and demand for healthy, affordable foods and beverages.

The newly launched Center for Healthy Food Access housed at The Food Trust focuses on a number of efforts to ensure that every child has access to affordable, nutritious food, including:

  • Strengthening federal nutrition programs including SNAP, WIC and SNAP-Ed.
  • Improving the food and water quality in schools.
  • Creating jobs and economic development by bringing grocery stores and other healthy food businesses to underserved areas.
  • Partnering with businesses to focus marketing efforts on healthier choices.
  • Expanding SNAP Incentive programs that provide support to make healthier food more affordable for those on food stamps.
  • Promoting healthyfoodaccess.org so organizations and businesses can share successes with one another.
  • Providing $1 million in grants to more than 15 organizations across the country. For a full list of partners, go to healthyfoodaccess.org.

The Center for Engagement and Community Development Rural Grocery Initiative (RGI) received $50,000 from the newly established center.  K-State’s RGI is excited to join The Food Trust in this innovative endeavor to raise up what works and tackle common challenges together so we can improve access to nutritional foods.  For its work, CECD will continue to explore ways to strengthen rural grocery stores so that these rural food retail operations can better provide local citizens access to healthy foods.  Specifically, CECD is collaborating with Dr. Spencer Wood in sociology to examine the impact social capital has on rural grocery operations.

To learn more about K-State’s Center for Engagement and Community Development and its Rural Grocery Initiative, please see: www.k-state.edu/cecd  or www.ruralgrocery.org