Shawnee Fresh Stop bringing local fruits and vegetables to under - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Shawnee Fresh Stop bringing local fruits and vegetables to underserved community

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The season kicks off with a strawberry festival and then includes bi-weekly Fresh Stops from June through October. The season kicks off with a strawberry festival and then includes bi-weekly Fresh Stops from June through October.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Some west Louisville residents are getting a fresh start with better access to fresh fruits and vegetables. It is part of the annual Fresh Stop in the Shawnee neighborhood, an area that typically doesn't have access to fresh produce.

"I like living down here for the people," said Amber Burns. "When I first moved here almost everyone on the block came up to introduce themselves to me."

Burns loves the old fashioned hospitality of the Shawnee neighborhood, but she will be the first to admit, the area is missing something.

"Food is very important to me; my family often laughs at me because I refuse to buy from most of the grocery stores in my neighborhood," said Burns.

There are plenty of stores and gas stations that sell food on just about every corner, but Burns travels outside the area for healthier options.

"I usually travel 25 minutes to either the Highlands, the Value Market on Bardstown Road or I'll go to Trader Joe's," Burns said.

In fact, the Shawnee neighborhood is considered a food desert which is defined as "An urban area in which it is difficult to buy affordable or good-quality fresh food."

That's why the annual Fresh Stop is so important to people who want fresh fruits and vegetables.

"It is very difficult to get affordable farm fresh food in Shawnee and any neighborhood in West Louisville," explained Karyn Moskowitz, executive director of New Roots.

New Roots is a non-profit organization that sponsors Fresh Stop, Moskowitz says instead of shopping at the neighborhood stores, Kentucky farmers bring the goods right to West Louisville.

"We pre-order so by the time they get here all they have to do is drop off the produce...they get paid and they go back to their farms to farm," said Moskowitz.

The season kicks off with a strawberry festival and then includes bi-weekly Fresh Stops from June through October.

"Hopefully there'll one day be a year round fresh stop," Burns said.

Burns is hopeful to one day have a more permanent source for healthy food in the neighborhood.

"But until then I am going to enjoy June to October as much as possible," she said.

The next Fresh Stop is on June 16 in Smoke Town.

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