Clark County Combined Health District Statement on the Closing of the Kroger on South Limestone
Springfield, Ohio - Kroger has announced they are closing the South Limestone Kroger on March 3rd, 2020. Neighborhoods south of downtown Springfield were already considered food deserts. The closing of this important food source will only make access more difficult for our residents.
Food deserts are defined as geographical areas devoid of fresh fruit, vegetables and other healthy foods. One of the barriers for people pursuing a healthy diet is a lack of access to high-quality, nutritious food. Individuals who cannot access full-service grocery stores are more likely to purchase food from convenience stores, where fresh produce and other healthy foods may be of limited quantity and low quality, if not entirely absent.
The Clark County Combined Health District (CCCHD) recently conducted a survey to assess food insecurity and identify food deserts in Clark County. Results of the survey indicated that full-service grocery stores with adequately priced produce were in neighborhoods with higher median incomes. While there was a limited selection of canned or frozen vegetables at convenience stores that accept EBT or WIC, these products were often double the price of the same products at the grocery stores. The south side of Springfield had the fewest stores with fresh produce, processed produce or the ability to accept food assistance programs. These factors qualify this area as a food desert. The unfortunate closing of the Kroger grocery store on South Limestone only compounds this issue.
In summary, food access in our city is an immediate public health concern. Starting March 3rd, south side residents will not have an option for accessible and affordable healthy food. CCCHD is committed to working with residents, business owners, local government and community leaders to address this issue.