Marion County wants healthier corner stores

Marion County wants healthier corner stores

The Marion County Health Department partnered with seven corner stores in food deserts to provide better access to healthy food.

With the help of a three-year Kaiser Permanente grant of $170,000, the health department has been out in the community to educate and coax store owners to offer fresh produce — a departure from the traditional corner store staples, such as chips and soda. These stores are in food deserts, areas in which it is difficult to buy affordable or good-quality fresh food.

"This is a growing trend in communities interested in combating obesity because it deals with access to healthy foods," said Jennifer Eskridge, prevention program supervisor with the health department. "Food deserts are less likely to have access because they're too far from full-access grocery stores. They're relying on corner stores that are stocked with high-calorie and low-nutrient junk food."

Read more at KATU.

Read  OB's October cover story on fresh and local convenience store trends here.