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Shannon Baldwin

Articles by Shannon Baldwin

Mexican-Style Bakery Stocks Fruits and Vegetables

Many neighborhoods in Topeka, Kansas don't have a grocery store near by, forcing residents to travel far to get healthy food items like fruits and vegetables. When a large grocery store closed in one Topeka neighborhood, the community was left without a place to buy fresh food. Mike Ramirez owns Panaderia Monterrey, a Mexican-style bakery in the neighborhood with the closed grocery store. He decided to begin stocking more fresh food items so that neighbors who lived by the bakery could grab what they needed without going far away. “We were a bakery, but when (the grocery store) closed, now we go with a full line of the eggs and the dairy products, a little bit of the fruits and vegetables,” he said. When store owners are flexible and begin examining the needs of their ...

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A Legal Toolkit for Community Gardens

Community gardens are a great way for folks to grow fresh fruits and vegetables just steps from their homes. But getting them started, especially on privately-owned land, can be tricky. ChangeLab Solutions has designed a toolkit to help overcome the legal and practical barriers to establishing community gardens on privately-owned land. It provides several model agreements and other documents that can easily be tailored, simplifying the process of building an agreement that benefits both landowners and the community. Check out the toolkit ...

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Resources for Getting Healthier Food into Stores

For families living in areas without access to a full-service grocery store, eating healthy can be a struggle. But what if you could get grocery stores that sell fresh produce to move into your neighborhood? Or what if you could convince existing corner store and convenience store owners to stock more fresh, healthy food items? ChangeLab Solutions has tons of resources on how to bring healthy food retail into your community. Highlighted below are a few noteworthy resources aimed at getting healthier food into your area: Tools for Attracting Healthy Food Retail to Underserved Neighborhoods How to Tap into the Healthy Food Retailer Funding Stream Finding Public Financing for Healthy Food Retail Licencing Healthy Food ...

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Land Use Policies to Protect and Promote Farmers’ Markets

Local governments can promote access to fresh produce, support local farmers, create community gathering places, and revitalize neighborhoods by supporting farmers’ markets. ChangeLab Solutions, a healthy living policy research and development group, released this guide to provide an overview of farmers’ market policy issues and community tested best practices. The guide also features a set of complementary model land use policies for comprehensive plans and zoning ordinances. Download the guide ...

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Groups Work to Make Silicon Valley Healthier

Many folks living in California's Silicon Valley have a hard time getting fresh fruits and vegetables on to the table, with fast food restaurants and convenience stores seeming to pop up on every street. Families are unhealthy, and the community has decided to make a stand. The Santa Clara County Food System Alliance has been working to bring better food access to the county through policy recommendations, nutrition programs, urban farming projects, and more. In January 2014, the alliance released the Santa Clara County Food Systems Assessment, which analyses key baseline data regarding the Santa Clara County’s food system and developed recommendations aimed at building a more just, vibrant, and durable food system. The alliance encourages city and county ...

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Subway Commits to Healthier Meals for Kids

Busy families on the go often turn to unhealthy fast food for a quick, inexpensive meal. But what if a quick, inexpensive meal wasn't always filled with junk? First lady Michelle Obama has enlisted Subway in her mission to get kids to eat more fruits and vegetables, hoping to merge convenience and nutrition. As the default kids meal options, Subway is offering apples instead of chips and either milk or water over soda. The meals are 600 calories or less, contain no trans fat and provide at least a half serving of fruit and three-quarters of a serving of vegetables. The restaurant will also begin a 41 million dollar marketing effort aimed at encouraging kids to eat more fruits and veggies. Signs will adorn the doors of every one of Subway’s more than 25,000 U.S. locations, ...

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Hawaii Soda Limits

A bill limiting the size of sugary drinks was introduced into the Hawaii state legislature in January 2014. The bill would set a maximum serving size of sixteen fluid ounces for sugar-sweetened beverages in sealed and unsealed containers provided by food establishments and prohibits the sale of sugar-sweetened beverages as part of children's meals. Read the bill ...

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Healthier Food Choices in Public Places

It's no secret that improving food choices in hospitals, parks, and community centers would benefit kids health. But actually getting it done---that's the tough part. The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) has published a ton of helpful resources to help communities get healthier food choices into public places. These resources can help you to improve food and beverage options served and sold through vending machines, cafeterias, concession stands, meetings, and events. You'll find info on nutrition standards, tips for success, model policies that have already been successful, and more. View all the ...

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Soda and Candy Tax in Massachusetts

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick delivered his final state budget plan to lawmakers in January 2014. The budget included some measures that would help fund public health initiatives and potentially help folks reduce their sugary drink consumption. Patrick is proposing $57 million in new revenue by applying the state's sales tax to candy and soda. That proposal has been rejected by lawmakers in the past, but Patrick again made the argument in favor of the tax saying the money would go to support public health and infrastructure projects. Read more ...

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