California Grocers Association President Ronald K. Fong joined First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama and other local leaders today to celebrate the first tangible examples of progress facilitated by the California FreshWorks Fund, a $264 million public-private partnership loan fund led by The California Endowment.
The event featured fresh and healthy foods that will soon be available at an abandoned Inglewood, CA store site that, with the help of the California FreshWorks Fund, will soon become a Northgate Gonzalez Markets.
The Association is one of 20 companies, associations, government agencies and health groups to participate in the creation and launch of the California FreshWorks Fund last summer.
“The California Grocers Association is proud to be a part of this historic undertaking,” said CGA President Ron Fong. “The California FreshWorks Fund represents a tremendous step forward in bringing needed grocery stores to underserved areas throughout California.”
“We are equally proud that one of our valued members, Northgate Gonzalez Markets, is one of its first participants,” Fong added. “Northgate Gonzalez is an excellent example of the type of supermarket that is ready and willing to provide healthy food options in underserved areas.”
Fong also commended the First Lady for her ongoing efforts to improve the eating habits of Americans.
“We commend the First Lady for her unwavering commitment to raising the awareness for greater healthy food access. Her attendance today validates the importance and success of this ambitious undertaking,” Fong said.
But, Fong said, the effort to bring grocery stores to underserved areas is far from over.
“We are far from being done,” he said. “We have cleared one major hurdle with the implementation of the FreshWorks fund, but there is still work to do. We must continue to work together in a coordinated effort to resolve the challenges that stand as barriers to bringing healthy, affordable food to underserved areas.”