Summary: H.R.3104 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.3104. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in House (06/29/2017)

Food Deserts Act of 2017

This bill establishes a Department of Agriculture program to provide grants to states for revolving funds to support the establishment and operation of grocery stores in underserved communities.

An underserved community is a community that has: (1) limited access to affordable, healthy foods, including fresh fruits and vegetables, in grocery retail stores or farmer-to-consumer direct markets; and (2) a high rate of hunger or food insecurity or a high poverty rate.

States must use the funds to make loans to support grocery stores in underserved communities, including for: opening a store (excluding new construction), supporting or purchasing an existing store, or supporting a store located in a community that would be underserved without the store.

States may only make loans for grocery stores that meet requirements related to:

  • emphasizing unprocessed, healthful foods;
  • providing staple foods and a variety of raw fruits and vegetables;
  • having a plan to keep the foods in stock;
  • charging prices at or below market averages;
  • meeting specified matching requirements using non-federal funds; and
  • being qualified to operate a store or having partnerships with organizations that provide technical assistance.

States must prioritize loan applications from entities that meet criteria related to:

  • hiring workers from the underserved community,
  • providing classes or educational information about a healthful diet,
  • sourcing food from local urban farms and gardens,
  • not selling alcohol or tobacco products, or
  • demonstrating existing supply chain relationships or expertise in the grocery industry.