Posted by Tracie McMillan on Jan 08, 2018

A food desert is an area that has limited access to affordable and nutritious food.  The usage of the term considers the type and quality of food available to the population.  Food deserts are characterized by a lack of supermarkets which decreases residents’ access to fruits, vegetables and other whole foods.  When I first learned about food deserts, it focused on those living more than one mile from a supermarket in urban or suburban areas.  Last November, I learned of the food deserts in rural America where people are living more than 10 miles from a supermarket.  Due lack of availability to fruits and vegetables, residents rely on processed, sugar, and fat laden foods for their daily caloric intake.  These foods are known contributors to the United States’ obesity epidemic.

Tracie McMillan is the author of The American Way of Eating and a Senior Fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University.  Photographers Kitra Cahana, Stephanie Sinclair, and Amy Toensing are known for their intimate, sensitive portraits of people.

The magazine thanks The Rockefeller Foundation and members of the National Geographic Society for their generous support of this series of articles.

Maps and graphics by Virginia W. Mason and Jason Treat, NGM Staff.  Help for the Hungry, sources: USDA; Food Research and Action Center; Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.  Stranded in a Food Desert, sources: USDA; City of Houston; U.S. Census Bureau.  Crop Subsidies, research: Amanda Hobbs.  Sources: Mississippi Department of Human Services; Environmental Working Group; National Cancer Institute.

Clink link to download program The New Face of Hunger

Source: https://www.nationalgeographic.com/foodfeatures/hunger/