The Amherst Mobile Market not only makes affordable produce available within walking distance of residents who struggle to access healthy food, but also puts decision-making in the hands of low-income, BIPOC community members and builds the capacity of those community members to take on leadership roles.
While the challenges around food access in Amherst are ever present for some, others may be unaware that nearly all of Amherst's census tracts are designated as "food deserts" by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, meaning that they contain high concentrations of residents who are both low-income and live more than a mile from the grocery store. Residents without vehicles, who constitute 11% of Amherst's population, often report that it can take up to two hours to get to and from the grocery store by bus, and that expensive cab rides are often required for the trip home to prevent groceries from spoiling.
THE PROBLEM BY THE NUMBERS
1 IN 4
Amherst residents is low income and lives more than a mile from a supermarket
of Amherst residents lack access to a vehicle
is the difference in heart failure hospitalization rates between Black and White residents of Amherst
OUR SOLUTION BY THE NUMBERS
Amherst residents representing food desert communities engaged in a multi-year planning process
Amherst residents from food desert communities were employed by the mobile market in 2020
per week is the cost of a 6-item Amherst Mobile Market farmshare, which can be purchased with SNAP and reimbursed through HIP
Amherst area farms sold their produce through the mobile market in 2020
affordable, organic produce items sold in 2020
individuals were served by the mobile market in its pilot year
of 2020 survey respondents said the mobile market facilitated access to fresh, healthy food
of 2020 mobile market customers had an annual household income of under $50,000
HELP US SPREAD OUR WINGS
The Amherst Mobile Market Planning Committee needs to raise $30,000 for the 2021 season in order to hire staff from all the neighborhoods the market serves, keep the cost of produce affordable for low-income shoppers, and make the markets a welcoming place for community members to gather.
Below is our video, "Amherst Mobile Market: Cultivating Change." The video illustrates what a difference the Amherst Mobile Market has made in the lives of Amherst community members. Please consider making a donation to help us continue cultivating change through the 2021 season and beyond.