In his newest column within the Arkansas Well being Journal, ACHI President and CEO Dr. Joe Thompson discusses the prevalence of meals deserts in Arkansas; areas the place residents lack handy entry to wholesome, reasonably priced meals choices.

Thompson writes that in keeping with ACHI’s evaluation, greater than 50% of residents in 1 of 4 Arkansas census tracts had low entry to wholesome meals sources in 2019, and the issue has possible gotten worse since then with meals and gasoline will increase. due to costs and not too long ago closed grocery shops. He notes that in lots of Arkansas neighborhoods, the one choices for grocery purchasing are gasoline stations and comfort shops, which generally carry little or no wholesome meals.

Final 12 months, Thompson served on the Governor’s Meals Desert Working Group, convened by former Gov. Asa Hutchinson to review the state’s meals desert drawback and advocate methods to deal with it. In his column, Thompson summarizes the group’s suggestions, which will be discovered of their entirety of their report.

For extra data on meals deserts in Arkansas, see our explainer.

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