Food deserts in Mid-Missouri

USDA says Downtown Columbia is a food desert

COLUMBIA, Mo. - Across the country there is more attention being paid to a lack of healthy, affordable food in certain areas.

The department of agriculture calls these areas "food deserts."

A food desert is when a large population of people does not live within walking distance of a grocery store and relies on the unhealthy food around them.

Bob Garino of the U.S. Department of Agriculture said, "Low income areas are more susceptible a lot of times. They may not have access to the transportation they need and that can happen in either urban or rural areas."

Many USDA standard food deserts are in rural Missouri. There is also one in Downtown Columbia.

However, there may be some help coming for Columbia. Walmart announced this past summer it is planning a small store downtown and a Lucky's Farmers Market is expected to open near Providence and Broadway in January.

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