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Residents' access to healthy foods in a lower income region of Vancouver, BC

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With settlement patterns in many large North American cities changing, policy makers have begun to analyze the extent to which residents have access to the services necessary for a healthy life. This study assesses the barriers to food access in the North East Health District of Vancouver, British Columbia. With only three large grocery stores serving close to 100,000 people, residents must either find different sources for food purchasing or devise methods to access large grocery stores in order to achieve a healthy and nutritious lifestyle. Several barriers reduce residents’ ability to find appropriate food choices, the most significant barriers being distance, availability, and affordability. This study develops and evaluates policy options to overcome these barriers. It concludes that easing zoning and permitting restrictions could create more small business opportunities and increase availability for underserved residents of the community.
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