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Policy Brief

Changing Food Industry Practices that Contribute to Diet-related Chronic Diseases

Changing Food Industry Practices that Contribute to Diet-related Chronic Diseases

This policy brief summarizes what is known about the impact of food industry practices on diet-related NCDs and describes some of the actions government, civil society and business have taken to prevent these conditions since the 2011 UN meeting. Finally, it examines how in the coming years New York City can learn from and teach others from around the world how to change the food industry practices that contribute to diet-related NCDs.

Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation’s Farm to Early Care Program

Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation’s Farm to Early Care Program

By Morgan Ames, Tracey Capers, Craig Willingham, Sarah Wolf, and Nick Freudenberg

Across New York City and the nation, low-income and working families with young children endeavor to raise strong, healthy children; maintain their family’s health; find and keep decent jobs and affordable housing; create safe communities; and claim a voice in shaping their neighborhoods. At the same time, within these communities, resilient families and children, skilled and experienced leaders, and many established civic organizations with a history of organizing to improve their neighborhoods have shown the power of local action to promote health, equity and community development.

REFRESH: Modifying the Food Retail Expansion to Support Health Program to Improve Healthy Food Access

REFRESH: Modifying the Food Retail Expansion to Support Health Program to Improve Healthy Food Access

by Nevin Cohen, Research Director, CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute

A decade ago, New York City set out to improve access to healthy food in neighborhoods with insufficient full-service grocery stores. The resulting Food Retail Expansion to Support Health (FRESH) program, adopted in 2009, was modeled after the Pennsylvania Fresh Food Financing initiative and mirrored similar efforts in cities, states, and the federal government. FRESH eased zoning requirements for supermarket development and offered financial benefits to encourage supermarket operators to open and expand stores in designated FRESH zones.

Feeding or Starving Gentrification: The Role of Food Policy

Feeding or Starving Gentrification: The Role of Food Policy

by Nevin Cohen, Research Director, CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute

Gentrification has transformed low-income communities worldwide. The process is complex but often follows a consistent pattern: capital flows into low-income neighborhoods, more affluent residents move in, real estate values go up, the housing stock is upgraded, low-income residents are forced to leave, and community character changes to accommodate the newcomers. Gentrification can happen abruptly, with people and businesses displaced through eviction, but more commonly occurs gradually, even over generations, as children of longtime residents leave because they cannot afford to remain in the neighborhood in which they grew up. The impact of gentrification varies, too. Those able to remain in place while their neighborhoods gentrify may benefit from new investments, more political influence, and better infrastructure and services, or they may suffer the loss of place as commerce, culture, civic life, aesthetics, and the people living around them become unaffordable, unfamiliar, or unwelcoming.

Growing a Regional Food Shed in New York: Lessons from Chicago, Toronto and Cincinnati

Growing a Regional Food Shed in New York: Lessons from Chicago, Toronto and Cincinnati

By Nevin Cohen, Nicholas Freudenberg, and Craig Willingham
 

A stronger, more integrated New York City and State regional foodshed offers many potential benefits: increased access to healthy affordable regionally grown food, creation of new good food jobs in agricultural and urban communities, better protection of farmland,  more sustainable regional agriculture that slows climate change and new upstate/downstate partnerships that can constitute a political force for advocating alternatives to a corporate-dominated food system. In this policy brief, we examine lessons for New York City from the regional foodsheds that are developing in Chicago, Toronto and Cincinnati.