The Issue of Food Access
Many low-income urban areas lack grocery stores and access to nutritious food, such as fresh fruits and vegetables.
Growing your own food is a great way to build a healthier plate. Research shows that people who have access to fruits and vegetables eat more of them, and that children who garden are more likely to eat fruits and vegetables and have greater knowledge about nutrition and healthy eating habits. Eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables is associated with a decreased risk of many chronic diseases, including heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity. USDA’s MyPlate recommends that everyone fill half their plate with fruits and vegetables. Learn more about healthy eating using MyPlate. Did you know that USDA Supplementary Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) dollars can be used to purchase seeds to grow food as well as buy food?
Urban agriculture empowers people to address hunger and poverty within their own community by growing fresh, nutritious food and inspiring healthy dietary changes. Today, 15 percent of the world’s food is grown in urban areas. These gardens provide jobs, create greenspaces that unify neighborhoods, and reduce the distance food travels from farm to table, which is better for the plate and the planet.