Veronique: Very interested in the topic but developing an app. looking at green markets. Great idea. Distinguishing between type of stores is important. Less clear how expensive things were. The part about the history was interesting. Not sure how it ties into your point – poor people don’t have access to food. Not sure how to convey this differently. Have you looked at CSAs? Started in the 70s in all the 5 boroughs – so when you sign up for a CSA, you pay $300 up front. In exchange you get a basket of produce each week. When I did my research there were a lot of CSAs particularly in the Bronx. So that even though there are not a lot of stores, there is still availability of food. Even if they don’t have the money up front people pool together.
Carlos: re-evaluation of what you originally said. Interesting in how you approached it, but in an urban setting, it’s not necessarily that there are food deserts, but that the food is of a certain quality and that economics play a factor. Almost like another problem that we are talking about. It’s not that there isn’t food, it’s that the quality promotes malnourishment or poor diet. Example from Carlos’ neighborhood – franchises with soda and fast food being the only option for many people. Is this something you should be looking at, what are people eating if they can’t afford to buy at supermarkets.
Veronique: I’m not sure that politicians actually know what food stamps can buy. Start the application with an explanation of what food stamps can buy, or compare data between the area showing what stores accept food stamps and which ones don’t.
Carlos: Snapshot of the food basket, what you spend per day to feed a family. Staples, milk, bread, fruit, and to compare them. For someone to feed themselves in this deli per week = $80 vs. $60 in another one. Maybe it’s just part of your study, at least during the project phase of your study, you can get a snapshot of that. Ask people how much food they buy vs. how much it would actually cost in certain areas.
Veronique: so this uses GPS, so this is for the phone? Would be interesting to have a low-tech text based way to use this application.
Carlos: What is your goal with this project? What would you tell a politician with this data?