Extended Play: Grocery Squeeze

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This week's news story delves into a local lawsuit concerning Sonoma County's "food desert," a federally-designated swath of southeast Santa Rosa with little access to grocery stores. The Living Wage Coalition filed the lawsuit, fearing that Walmart would use the relaxed zoning measures that came along with it to open a small grocery store in the area.

The new Smart & Final will have benefitted from relaxed zoning measures associated with Santa Rosas food desert.
  • The new Smart & Final will have benefitted from relaxed zoning measures associated with Santa Rosa's food desert.

While our story is mostly about this local issue, the trend of Walmarts opening in food deserts is nationwide. The question, of course, is whether low-paying jobs and mass-importation of produce and other groceries is actually harmful to low-income areas long-term.
There have been some other, excellent articles written on this topic. Here's some further reading:

Mother Jones: Is Walmart the Answer to Food Deserts?

Grist.org: Eaters Beware: Walmart is Taking Over Our Food System

The Nation: Walmart's Fresh Food Makeover

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