HIGH POINT, N.C. -- According to the USDA, High Point has seven food deserts -- areas where it’s hard to find affordable, fresh food.
“Their only option is getting a bag of chips at the convenient store,” said Ross Lackey, owner of Kapuka Farms in High Point.
This week Lackey and other members of the Greater High Point Food Alliance and the group People are the Point spoke out to city leaders, asking for changes in city ordinances to make it easier for people to grow their own food.
“You have people making suggestions and generally it feels like they fall on deaf ears,” Lackey said at the community forum Monday.
Lackey and others want city leaders to open up city-owned land, like empty lots, and allow for community gardens and food parks.
Bike shop owner Steven Hollingsworth wants city leaders to improve sidewalks and create more bike lanes and bike parking so that people who don’t have cars can ride bikes to get food.
He’s also working on a plan to turn used, donated bicycles into cargo bikes to help with grocery shopping.
“It can be as simple as putting big baskets on the front and back,” Hollingsworth said.
City leaders say they’re working on putting some of the ideas expressed at this week’s community forum into action as soon as possible.
“We can’t do it solely as a government,” said High point City Councilman Jason Ewing. “We need to tap into the talent base and the people motivated to make this happen.”
“We need them,” Lackey said. “We need them to act so we can solve this problem.”