October 1, 2023


Be Inspired By Food

Here’s how researchers believe NYC can reduce food insecurity and improve access to healthy options

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Over 1 million New York Town citizens are food stuff insecure, according to city facts, and analysis displays that healthy food stuff options in poorer areas of the city can be scarce. But gurus recently put together a series of suggestions aimed at setting up a greater food items process in the town.

The policy briefs and suggestions target on a variety of regions, like lessening food insecurity, enhancing access to healthful foods for all New Yorkers and decreasing the advertising of harmful food stuff options.

The concepts are component of a seven-section collection, titled “NY Food items 2025: Plan Recommendations for a More powerful, Healthier, Much more Just, and Sustainable Foodstuff Technique in NYC,” just lately launched by the Hunter College or university NYC Food stuff Plan Heart, The Laurie M. Tisch Centre for Meals, Education and learning & Coverage and the CUNY Urban Food stuff Coverage. The perform builds off the group’s earlier report documenting the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on New York City’s meals technique and workforce, and as a result, the communities impacted by foodstuff insecurity.

According to the NYC Mayor’s Business of Meals Policy’s Food stuff Metrics Report introduced in December 2021, an believed 1.4 million NYC inhabitants — 12.9% of the city’s population — are food stuff insecure.

Food Insecurity by Borough

A chart demonstrates the proportion of NYC inhabitants who are food stuff insecure by borough, centered on city details. (New York Food items 2025)

The NY Foodstuff 2025 collection contains 28 suggestions centered about:

  • Lowering food items insecurity
  • Strengthening access to healthy foods for all New Yorkers
  • Lessening the marketing and ubiquity of unhealthy meals
  • Implementing a sustainable and equitable meals infrastructure
  • Protecting and empowering meals workers
  • Increasing coordination and monitoring of meals plan
  • Rising local community stake in and control around the city’s foodstuff method

The collection specifically highlights overall health inequities that have been exacerbated for the duration of the pandemic.

Nevin Cohen, study director for the CUNY City Foods Coverage Institute, just lately penned an report that was published in this month’s version of the Yearly Critique of Community Wellness in which he prompt that big disasters, this kind of as the pandemic, current a special opportunity for towns to strengthen their infrastructure.

“The COVID-19 pandemic is only the most current crisis to impact both international and area foods methods,” Cohen wrote. “Problems open up windows of option for progressive and experimental initiatives that are highly developed by coverage business people. Upended routines in the wake of main disasters can also speed up institutional finding out, innovation adoption, and political action.”

“A critical problem for food items procedure planners and advocates in the wake of the pandemic is to rethink the priorities and plan techniques, and the scale of initiatives, that city officers have collectively embraced about the previous many many years,” Cohen additional.

New York Meals 2025 addresses this challenge, giving the Metropolis Council and the mayor numerous recommendations, these kinds of as: increasing the funds for the Mayor’s Office environment of Foodstuff Coverage delivering a lot more guidance to assist wholesome food stuff initiatives at the neighborhood level, such as modest companies growing cost-effective foods packages, this sort of as SNAP, EBT, Wellbeing Bucks and Get the Great Things improving the nutritional good quality of foodstuff support courses by the stop of 2022.

The sequence also features suggestions for actions to be taken among 2022 and 2025, such as:

  • Drafting new preparedness options for future big-scale states of emergency
  • Making certain a common definition of wholesome food items for businesses and crisis food items applications
  • Growing nutrition incentive systems for suppliers as well as customers
  • Strengthening regional foods programs — advertising and marketing local products and solutions
  • Supporting city agriculture
  • Producing procedures in which New Yorkers most afflicted by the foods technique can impact guidelines and insurance policies impacting their well-currently being

Recent NYC Foodstuff Plan UPDATES

Equally the City Council and Mayor Eric Adams have been building a concerted hard work to encourage nutritious meals, as properly as increase accessibility to it.

In December 2021, the Council permitted the growth of the city’s Foods Retail Growth to Support Overall health (Fresh new) method to 11 further lessen-money neighborhood districts all through the city, which include a big portion of Community Board 1 — which incorporates St. George, Tompkinsville, Stapleton, Mariners Harbor, Port Richmond and Rosebank.


In December 2021, the Metropolis Council permitted the growth of the city’s Foods Retail Enlargement to Aid Overall health (Refreshing) software to 11 additional lessen-revenue group districts through the metropolis, together with a huge part of Local community Board 1. (NYC Division of Metropolis Organizing)

Fresh, which commenced in 2009, supplies options for new supermarkets giving wholesome and cost-effective foodstuff to underserved communities via tax and zoning incentives for developers and property proprietors.

The Refreshing update also tweaks zoning rules to avoid counterproductive clustering of grocery store internet sites, as well as adjustments to renovation and parking specifications in reduce-density districts to make it much easier for merchants to open. Just about every new Clean retail store is also anticipated to make 30 to 100 nearby positions.

Staten Island presently has just one Clean retailer, a Crucial Meals in South Beach. The NYC Economic Development Corporation lists Stapleton as a target area in FRESH’s new enlargement.

Adams, who is a proponent of plant-based lifestyles, declared in February the expansion of the NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue’s Plant-Dependent Lifestyle Medication Application in all five boroughs, which includes Gotham Wellbeing, Vanderbilt in Clifton.

The plan will give people dwelling with persistent disorder the instruments to make wholesome life-style changes, together with giving them entry to plant-dependent diet program means.

In February, Adams also signed two govt orders emphasizing the marketing, purchasing and serving of wholesome food items citywide.