Healthy Marketing and Retail Environment
A healthy marketing and retail environment promotes the sale of safe, healthy and affordable products and services. The accessibility of such products allows consumers of all backgrounds to make informed and health conscious decisions about their purchases and the products they are consuming.
Disparities and Statistics
Race and Ethnicity: Existing data indicates that ethnic minorities are subject to a disproportionately large amount of junk food advertising on television, billboards and other traditional media, relative to the general public.16 Indeed, studies consistently show that the “most frequently promoted and most accessible products to African Americans, relative to White Americans, [are] high-calorie and low-nutrition foods and beverages.”¹⁷
Socioeconomic Status: While the growth of fast food in poor urban neighborhoods has increased steadily, supermarkets stocking fresh, high-quality food have simultaneously relocated to the more spacious and affluent suburbs. Economic realities, spatial considerations, industry-related concerns, and social factors have all led to supermarket divestment of poor urban areas. This migration, combined with lack of transportation to the suburbs and the higher prices charged by local convenience stores, has made fast food the dominant food source in many low-income, urban communities.¹⁸
Health: Low-income, urban neighborhoods disproportionately patronize fast food restaurants. Statistically, they also tend to have nutritionally deficient diets and suffer disproportionately from diseases and deaths related to the consumption of unhealthy food. There are higher rates of diabetes, heart disease, strokes, and cancer in poor neighborhoods than in any other areas.¹⁸