Rural communities continue to face barriers to fresh and healthy food access, with approximately 18.8 million people (6.1%) in the US living in low-income and low food access areas, according to the USDA.
Digital platforms that combine multiple disciplines, from public health to regional planning, can help connect businesses, organizations and resources to improve access to fresh, healthy food in marginalized areas.
Using AI, NOURISH's platform connects local businesses, organizations, local planners and social impact investors together to provide access to fresh food while lowering healthy food costs in food deserts.
The platform creates a dynamic and interactive map of local food systems across the country by implementing both publicly available data and crowdsourced information. The platform allows for users to search for opportunities to fund and scale-up small businesses through its algorithms.
While the platform has only been tested in lower-income areas within San Diego and Imperial Counties, it demonstrates how data generation can connect stakeholders together to improve fresh food access and affordability as a long-term solution.
Partnership for a Healthier America’s (PHA) Food Equity and Opportunity Map also delivers a clearer picture of food deserts across the country to retailers and policy makers down to an area's zip code. The map leverages aggregated data from USDA’s Food Research Atlas, census data and the CDC’s national diabetes statistics report to identify areas of improvement.
Nutrition and meal-planning apps using third-party databases are opening opportunities for consumers to experience both personalized nutrition and convenience. The recently launched app, MyFoodPlanit, incorporates meal prep, planning, grocery shopping and macronutrient tracking, while its AI feature, Orion, suggests personalized recipe recommendations, simplifying meal prep for users.
Exploring food tech, food as medicine and more
Join FoodNavigator-USA’s free-to-attend virtual summit, Futureproofing the Food System on Nov. 14-16 to learn more about how tech and data are shaping health, policy and accessibility across the food and beverage supply chain. Click here to register for free.
Each day features morning and afternoon panel discussions and fireside chats from experts across various disciplines, from nutrition and health policy, logistics and operations to ingredient discovery and marketing, among many others.
The three-day virtual summit will explore three themes in the food industry:
Food Tech in Focus – view agenda here.
Food as Medicine – view agenda here.
Circular Economy – view agenda here.
The event is free-to-attend with registration. Click here to register.