USDA web tool highlights "food deserts"

Thursday - 5/19/2011, 6:35pm EDT

The Department of Agriculture is trying to shine a spotlight on what it calls "food deserts" -- low income neighborhoods with poor access to nutritious food. USDA's Economic Research Service developed a Food Desert Locator, a web-based mapping tool that shows food deserts across the U.S., and shows population characteristics in those census tracts. The Department says it wants to help policymakers and researchers expand access to fresh and healthy food in the 6500 deserts across the country.