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Program Brings Healthy Food To Inner Cities

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Making a healthy meal isn’t as easy as you’d think for some families.

That’s because it can be a struggle to get to a grocery store stocked with fresh fruits and veggies.

A new program is offering families a fresh start closer to home.

The Pennwood Market offers a hot dog, chips and a pop for $1.50, and they have lots of takers.

But a new program is helping small store owners put produce next to the Twinkies.

The city calls the program Appetite for Change, funded by the Statewide Health Improvement Program.

It provides signs, small display baskets and organizing help.

“We did a store makeover today, so it was an empty 7-UP cooler that we were graciously allowed to re-purpose to have fresh fruits and vegetables,” Michelle said.

At the Star Market on Lowry Avenue, a couple of bananas cost less than a bag of chips.

Being able to buy fresh food is important for customers who walk to stores like these.

“Residents in north Minneapolis, many of them don’t have access to transportation, there are also not that many grocery stores in north Minneapolis,” Nora said.

Antonio follows up with: “It’s a good thing that the city has decided to get involved, helping out the community, especially small supermarkets.”

This is the second year of the program, and it seems to be working.

“You know, if we have it, they’ll buy it,” said Pennwood owner Ahmad Hawari. “But it takes time, so, they have to get used to seeing it here and they will get acquainted with the idea that we have it in the corner store, and they’ll buy it.”

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