Organic eating in the City - FOX 13 News

FOX 5 Medical Team

Organic eating in the City

Posted: Updated:
ATLANTA, Ga. -

All across metro Atlanta are urban communities known as "food deserts." Meaning they don't have many grocery stores, or local growers.

But in Atlanta's Castleberry Hill neighborhood, a small convenience store is trying to buck that trend.

Alphonzo Cross and his sister opened The Box Car Grocer two years ago, offering healthy, fresh food to city-dwellers. And Cross says, at the time, a lot of people wondered if they could really survive.

He says the perception is, "That folks in these communities don't eat healthy. Don't care about health. Which is completely inaccurate and blatantly false." He believes, "The challenge is that these communities have been left behind. Have been disenfranchised for quite some time."

Cross thinks to grow a strong community, you have to feed it well. And at The Box Car Grocer, a good bit of the food the sell is organic. But what is organic food?

Cross says, "Organic really just means that it's un-tampered with, right out of the ground."

But he knows eating organic isn't cheap, it can add up quickly, "And so therein lies a really big challenge for most people."

Cross says if you want to eat better, start with fresh produce, like, "Fruits and vegetables, apples, bananas, oranges. Kale, spinach, broccoli. These are all foods that, produce, in a sense is the most inexpensive way to eat healthy food."

To save money, shop what's in season, and grown locally. And buy in bulk - to stretch your purchases into several meals.

If you eat out a lot, cut back, and put the money you save - into buying fresh. Cross explains, "Everyone can eat healthfully, but I think it really does begin and end with being able to prepare your foods, cook your foods so you're getting items in larger quantities, bulk, if you will. A whole chicken. A whole bag of rice."

Then – Cross says - plan your meals ahead of time,

"Preparing it, and letting that last through the week, to feed you and your whole family."

If you eat meat, Cross says you need to know where it comes from, and how it was raised.

He says eating for your health - may be a little harder on your wallet. But - to him - it's worth it. He says, "You can either pay for food up front. And not have to pay for it then, on the backside of our lives. Or we cannot pay for it up front, and definitely pay for on the back end. But, no matter what, you're going to pay for it.

The Box Car Grocer and many farmers markets accept EBT, or federal food assistance benefits.

Cross says they hope to grow their business, and eventually open up similar healthy "convenient markets" in cities across the country, concentrating on urban communities where fresh food is hard to find.

  • Good Day ArchiveMore>>

  • Get educated with online classes

    Get educated with online classes

    Monday, September 15 2014 12:40 PM EDT2014-09-15 16:40:23 GMT
    Ever wanted to take classes but thought you didn't have the time or or you couldn't afford it? Well with more and more online options out there, you do and you can. And many of them are free.
    Ever wanted to take classes but thought you didn't have the time or or you couldn't afford it? Well with more and more online options out there, you do and you can. And many of them are free.
  • Good Day Explores The Wide World Of Gourds

    Good Day Explores The Wide World Of Gourds

    Monday, September 15 2014 11:36 AM EDT2014-09-15 15:36:21 GMT
    There's a chill of fall in the air, but that's not the only sign of the approaching change in season. Right now, pumpkin patches are opening around the region -- and whether you're planning on carving
    There's a chill of fall in the air, but that's not the only sign of the approaching change in season. Right now, pumpkin patches are opening around the region -- and whether you're planning on carving or cooking, there are dozens of varieties to choose from. Good Day Atlanta's Paul Milliken has a look from Dawsonville.
  • Good Day Atlanta

    Teaching your kids the value of money

    Teaching your kids the value of money

    Monday, September 15 2014 11:22 AM EDT2014-09-15 15:22:34 GMT
    We've all been tempted to buy that extra toy, or give those extra few dollars to our kids to buy something on impulse...but are those the best habits to pass along?
    We've all been tempted to buy that extra toy, or give those extra few dollars to our kids to buy something on impulse...but are those the best habits to pass along?
Powered by WorldNow

FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
3213 West Kennedy Blvd.
Tampa, Florida 33609
Main: (813) 876-1313
Newsroom: (813) 870-9630
Fax: (813) 871-3135

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices