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Healthy Food Outside: Farmers' Markets, Taco Trucks, and Sidewalk Fruit Vendors By Alfonso Morales & Gregg Kettles

Healthy Food Outside: Farmers' Markets, Taco Trucks, and Sidewalk Fruit Vendors By Alfonso Morales & Gregg Kettles

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Published by: Street Vendor Project on Jul 21, 2010
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 HEALTHY FOOD OUTSIDE
: FARMERS’ MARKETS,
TACOTRUCKS, AND SIDEWALK FRUIT VENDORS
Alfonso Morales and Gregg Kettles
Reprinted FromTHE JOURNAL OF CONTEMPORARY HEALTH LAW AND POLICYVolume XXVICopyright © 2009 by The Catholic University of America
26 J.
 
C
ONTEMP
.
 
H
EALTH
L.
 
&
 
P
OL
Y
20 (2009).
 
 
20
HEALTHY FOOD OUTSIDE: FARMERS
MARKETS,TACO TRUCKS, AND SIDEWALK FRUITVENDORS
 Alfonso Morales
1
and Gregg Kettles
2
 
A
BSTRACT
 This paper explores the many dimensions of street vending and publicmarkets, the multiple intersections vending and markets have with foodregulation, and the historical connection markets have with other policyproblems. We develop the article in four parts, following the introductionfound in section one the article touches on three elements of law and publicpolicy. The second section considers markets and merchants in public goodswith their associated dilemmas. Our approach is to reconfigure the emphasison public space as transportation by justifying the use of the street andsidewalk for street vending. The importance of public space for commerceand other creative activities bridges the second and third sections of thearticle. The third section chronicles the history of law and regulation aroundstreet and public markets. Here we emphasize how cities historically usedpublic markets as public policy tools to address food security, employment,and to help those growing cities accommodate new immigrants. The fourthsection focuses on public health by examining the law of outdoor food soldon the street. Through our analysis we set forth numerous suggestions foradvocacy, policy, and legal reform.
1
. Assistant Professor of Urban and Regional Planning, University of Wisconsin. Iwould like to thank participants at workshops at Berlin Technical University (May 2009),the University of Wisconsin Department of Urban and Regional Planning (February2009), and panel presentations at the 2009 Annual Meeting of the American PlanningAssociation and the 2009 Annual Conference of the Community Food Security Coalition.I also would like to thank the editors of 
The Journal of Contemporary Health Law and Policy
for their helpful comments on prior drafts of this article.
2
. Professor, Mississippi College School of Law. I am thankful to participants atworkshops at the University of Wisconsin Law School and Occidental College, and panelpresentations at the 2009 Annual Meeting of the American Planning Association and the2009 Annual Conference of the Community Food Security Coalition. This article wassupported by a summer research grant from Mississippi College School of Law.
 
2009
 Healthy Food Outside
21
I
NTRODUCTION
 
One hundred years ago street vendors shouted ―Apples, get your apples!‖in cities across the United States. Today, ―
 Manzanas
 
deliciosos
!‖ shouted
from the street represents a renaissance of street commerce
 — 
with merchantsand municipalities painting the canvas of city life for many of the samereasons as they did 100 years ago. Street merchants and public markets havebeen essential to public health in cities across the United States. Marketshelped produce health through reducing food insecurity and making foodeasier to regulate. Over the last century, the transformation of agriculture,and of streets, curbs, and other public spaces into transportation corridors,have helped produce the grocery store industry and pushed merchants andmarkets into odd corners of big cities. More recently, however, the rapidgrowth of farmers
markets, swelling numbers of street vendors, andincreasing attention to public health concerns, such as diabetes and obesity,particularly among children, minorities, and the poor residents of urban
―food deserts,‖ has prod
uced a growing interest in open air food marketing.
3
 A century ago street vendors and markets helped make cities healthy.Today, we should enable them again as a tool for fostering healthy citizens.We rely on private enterprise to feed us, and for the past half-century weneglected the street vendor and market in favor of the grocery store. As aconsequence, our view of streets has become one-dimensional as well. Weview them as a way to get to the grocery store, rather than as a place to buyfood in its own right. Returning streets to multiple uses will help improvepublic health, thus we provide a strong theoretical justification for allowingprivate buyers and sellers of food to meet and trade in the public street.Section II uses public goods theory to ground thinking on contemporarystreet retail.The theoretical justification for markets is backed up by real worldexperience, as discussed in Section III. Over the last century public marketsplayed a prominent role in economic and social development.
4
The section
3
. J.
 
R
OBIN
M
OON
,
 
P
UBLIC
M
ARKETS AND
C
OMMUNITY
H
EALTH
:
 
A
N
E
XAMINATION
,
 
1 (Project for Public Spaces 2000);
 
L.
 
M
IKKELSEN ET AL
.,
 
H
EALTHY
E
ATING AND
P
HYSICAL
A
CTIVITY
:
 
A
DDRESSING
I
NEQUITIES IN
U
RBAN
E
NVIRONMENTS
,
 
1 (PreventionInstitute 2007);
 
V.
 
L
EE ET AL
.,
 
P
ROMISING
S
TRATEGIES FOR
C
REATING
H
EALTHY
E
ATINGAND
A
CTIVE
L
IVING
E
NVIRONMENTS
,
 
Preface (Prevention Institute 2008);
 
L.
 
D
IXON ETAL
.,
 
A
 
R
EPORT ON
S
TATE
A
CTION TO
P
ROMOTE
N
UTRITION
,
 
I
NCREASE
P
HYSICAL
A
CTIVITYAND
P
REVENT
O
BESITY
5
 
(Balance 2007); G. Collins,
Customers Prove There’s a Market 
 for Fresh Produce
, N.Y. T
IMES
, June 11, 2009, at A24; I.T. Walker,
Carpinteria Beats Back an Epidemic: How One Small City Took a Stand Against Childhood Obesity
, S
ANTA
B
ARBARA
I
NDEP
., Apr. 2, 2009, at 4.
4
. Alfonso Morales,
Peddling Policy: Street Vending in Historical and Contemporary Context 
, 20 J.
 
S
OC
.
 
A
ND
S
OC
.
 
P
OL
Y
76, 76-99 (2000); Helen Tangires,
 

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