Southwest Atlanta residents can look forward to receiving fresh fruits and vegetables from local farmers, courtesy of the Fulton County Cooperative Fresh Mobile Farmers' Market.
The Fulton County Cooperative is part of the University of Georgia's Cooperative Extension, founded in 1914 to share research-based agricultural education and improve quality of life for Georgia citizens. The Mobile Farmers' Market is one of the cooperative's programs aimed at addressing health disparities in “food desert” communities – those with very few or no stores that sell fresh produce.
According to a PolicyLink study cited recently by the Fulton County Cooperative, “millions of Americans in low-income communities and communities of color walk out their front doors and see nothing but fast food and convenience stores selling high-fat, high-sugar processed foods,” the consumption of which, no doubt, contributes to obesity and onset of chronic illnesses.
The mobile unit made its initial run Wednesday with stops along Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard and Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway. Those encountered along the way “seemed to be very enthusiastic about it,” said Sharian Schramm, a representative of Fulton County Cooperative Extension's central office.
In addition to proving fresh produce, Extension Agents will “educate residents about the importance of eating healthy and how to prepare tasty, healthy meals,” Director of Fulton County Cooperative Extension Menia Chester said.
Currently, the mobile unit will operate every second and fourth Wednesday at two locations:
10:00 am – 11:30 am
Shrine of the Black Madonna
946 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd., SW
Atlanta, GA 30310
1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
1838 Donald Lee Hollowell Pkwy., NW
Atlanta, GA 30318
Fulton County Cooperative hopes to add additional locations in the future. For more information, call (404) 332-2400.