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10 Ways Walmart Fails at Sustainability

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10. Spreading Poverty

In its bid to expand into cities, Walmart is promising to bring healthier foods to “food deserts,” neighborhoods that are underserved by grocery stores. While cheap fruits and vegetables might look good on paper, it is not so simple when costs to employees, workers throughout the food supply chain, and the environment are left out of the equation.

The main underlying cause of poor diet and diet-related health issues is poverty, according to a 15-year study recently published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. Rather than improving the economic health of families, which would enable them to buy healthier food, Walmart has the opposite effect. When Walmart comes into a community, incomes decline and poverty increases. According to a study published in Social Science Quarterly, neighborhoods that gain Walmart stores end up with more poverty and food-stamp usage than communities where the retailer does not open.

When it comes to the food system, Walmart is part of the problem, not the solution.

This post was originally published by Food & Water Watch, republished with permission.


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Photo from Peter Blanchard via flickr

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5:50AM PST on Jan 17, 2013

Thank you for sharing.

8:21AM PDT on Jul 31, 2012

Big box stores are there for their own profit, little more, destroy small business and contribute little, nothing surprising here!

7:48AM PDT on Jul 6, 2012

Is it just me or does it bother anyone else when people put thanks and interesting just to get their 20 pts.? Really? Is that all you have to say, when someone took the time to put this presentation together so you could get the information, share your thoughts and opinionI s and see the thoughts and opinions of others. And maybe come up with a solution or at the least make more people aware of the situation.
I learned a lot from this, however, I never felt comfortable in a Walmart. I have always taken a Xanax and run in for my one thing and run back out. In a way I have always felt a little creepy?
Not sure if that is the right word. Everything is crowded in and towering over which is a little scary for one so short as I, and closed in, with so many shoppers at one time, I just can't stay in there for more than a few minutes. I feel the greed and want one of everything it is too much pressure to buy, buy, buy!

11:59AM PDT on Jun 1, 2012

Just stay out of Wal-Mart for the reasons above and more. Support real local businesses and farmers, not mega billionaires that buy politicians!

10:38PM PDT on May 6, 2012

Thank you.

3:49PM PDT on May 6, 2012


2:13PM PDT on May 6, 2012

Thanks for posting.

4:51AM PDT on May 5, 2012

Walmart, the number one reason why the Chinese economy is growing rapidly while that of the US is declining

12:02AM PDT on May 5, 2012

Thank-you for the interesting article. Ten more reasons I don't shop at Walmart.

5:28PM PDT on May 4, 2012

Thanks for posting.

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