The New Jersey Healthy Corner Store Initiative announced today that it hosted Assemblyman Lou Greenwald, Assemblywoman Pamela Lampitt and other community leaders on a site visit at Camden’s Fayer’s Market (1400 Haddon Ave) on April 2. The tour showcased the positive impact healthy corner stores are making to increase people’s access to affordable, healthy food, as well as bolster economic development efforts by capturing dollars that would otherwise be spent outside of the community.
The New Jersey Healthy Corner Store Initiative is a statewide program focused on increasing the availability and sales of healthy, affordable food in local stores and bodegas. Currently, there are 80 corner stores participating in the initiative and the goal is to expand to approximately 150 corner stores in underserved New Jersey communities by yearend.
Fayer’s Market currently participates in the New Jersey Healthy Corner Store Initiative and was one of the first stores that participated in the Camden Healthy Corner Store Network, a program funded by Campbell Soup Company’s Healthy Communities program. Through the Campbell Healthy Communities program, 38 Camden neighborhood stores received education, tools and financial support to promote healthier food options to residents.
“Far too many New Jerseyans live in communities where they are unable to make healthy food choices because there are no well-stocked grocery or convenience stories in their neighborhoods,” said Corinne Orlando, director of Government Relations for the American Heart Association.
In 2013, New Jersey was one of six states that saw a slight increase in adult obesity, and the state’s rate of obesity among toddlers who reside in low-income communities is the second highest in the nation. In addition, the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that 340,000 New Jersey residents are living in food deserts across the state, while The Reinvestment Fund suggests even more alarming numbers with as much as 10% of the state’s population lacking access to healthy food options.
“Corner stores play a critical role in improving the health of children and families,” stated Kim Fortunato, director of Campbell Soup Company’s Healthy Communities program. “We chose Fayer’s Market for the site visit because of its ongoing commitment to increasing the availability and sales of healthy, affordable food.”
“Making affordable, nutritious food easy to find in corner stores is an important part of The Food Trust’s comprehensive approach to healthy food access and education,” says Yael Lehmann, executive director of The Food Trust. “We are thrilled to be supporting the work of such a strong and committed team of partners working together to make New Jersey an even better place to live and do business.”
For more information about the New Jersey Corner Store Initiative, please contact Corinne Orlando, director of Government Affairs, American Heart Association, firstname.lastname@example.org or 609-223-3720.