Neighborhood Food Watch
has launched a campaign to gather data on the quality of food and availability of fresh, healthy choices in South Los Angeles supermarkets, according to the Wave
The results will be presented to Kroger Co., the parent company of Ralphs and Food-4-Less, by early January,
said Gwendolyn Flynn, policy director for the Community Health Council.
More than 150 people signed up to become members, said Flynn.
Members willperiodically conduct surveys assessing the quality and availability of
healthy foods options, said Mia Boykin, a Community Health Council community liaison.
“For the most part, I’ve seen fruits and vegetables that have seen better days,” Flynn said. “They are bruised and soft — and they start to deteriorate. I have individuals that just happen to be into tofu and they’ve seen expired dates."
There are differences between South L.A. markets and those located in more affluent areas, said Louis Green, who manages a Ralphs in the Crenshaw District.
“You find a lot of people don’t care about their environment, their neighborhood,” said Green, an employee of the supermarket chain for more than 20 years, as he mopped up a spill in one of the aisles. “You know, someone came and dropped this on the floor and do you think they came in and said: ‘I spilled something on the floor’?
“It’s just a matter of caring,” he added. “This goes on all day long. I’m not knocking the community. I’m not knocking anyone, but if you cared a little more, our stores would be a little better.”
Ralphs spokesman Terry O’Neil said the chain welcomes the Neighborhood Food Watch campaign. “We always want to know what the community thinks about our supermarkets,” he said. “We always want to get better. We know that we are not perfect.”
“I can’t speak on specifics, about an item that is past its ‘sell by date.’ Our policy is to have fresh and wholesome food,” he said. “If it isn’t, we would ask that you bring it to the attention of store management
I say it's time for a Trader Joe's
or a new African Market to come to the Leimert Park Village. Request a location!