The long awaited Vallarta Supermarket opened its doors in Fresno on November 9, 2016. Located in a predominantly Latino community where the closest supermarket is nearly two miles away, the area is considered one of California’s food deserts. This store fills a glaring need for access to fresh, culturally appropriate food featuring a tortilleria, panaderia, carniceria and a broad assortment of fresh affordable produce.
NCCLF supports the Fresno Vallarta through the California FreshWorks program, which provides financing to businesses and projects that build equitable healthy food access in low-income communities. Investing in healthy food access is a priority for NCCLF in Fresno County. While the county is the most productive agricultural region in the nation, 45% of farmworkers are food insecure and one-third of children live in food insecure households.
“Investing in this project has been in alignment with our strategic priorities,” said Catherine Howard, NCCLF’s Director of Strategic Initiatives. “Grocery stores are the dominant way people access food in California, and working with a supermarket that has a large selection of fresh, healthy food increases equitable access for thousands of people in the surrounding community, while also creating employment opportunities for local residents.”
NCCLF is particularly proud of this accomplishment as the local community has not seen the development of a new grocery store in more than 15 years. With 50% of sales processed through EBT cards on opening day, Vallarta already demonstrates the high need for its services and products in the community. Vallarta is also expected to provide 200 full-time jobs.