Public campaign aims to put better food in stores 

This week, public-health agencies throughout the Bay Area and state unveiled a new campaign based on the idea that people are only as healthy as the offerings at their nearest stores.

The statewide Healthy Stores for a Healthy Community campaign relies on data from a massive statewide survey of more than 7,300 retailers underlining the link between local store environments and community health, with a focus on health impacts on children.

Health advocates hope the findings reveal how easy it is for kids to find flavored tobacco, alcohol and junk food at their neighborhood stores.

The campaign’s ultimate goal is to promote community dialogue and make both stores and their customers healthier, Bay Area health agency representatives said.

Survey data show that young people are still targeted by tobacco, alcohol and junk food advertisers.

Of the hundreds of Bay Area stores surveyed last summer, 83 percent sold flavored noncigarette tobacco products and are within 1,000 feet of a school. About eight in 10 stores sold sugar-laden malt alcoholic beverages known as alcopops, and some 52 percent of stores near schools sold sugary drinks at checkout areas, the survey shows.

In San Francisco, a measure proposed for the November ballot would impose a 2-cents-per-ounce tax on sales of sugary beverages.

— Staff, wire report

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Staff Report

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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