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Putting an End to Food Apartheid with Olympia Auset

Letting people experience delicious healthy food is a really big part of our mission, because that is what changes the most minds.

olympia auset

25 million people across the country live in food deserts — or what LA activist Olympia Auset calls food apartheid. People in these areas have easy access to junk food, liquor stores, and fast-food chains. But as Auset puts it if, “you want an organic avocado or tomato you’ll be hard-pressed to find it.”

Auset is changing that with SuprMarkt, a pop-up grocery store that makes healthy food choices an affordable, realistic option for underrepresented communities. 

Auset talks to us about her personal journey — how becoming vegan helped her see just how few healthy food options her community had. 

Can’t miss moments from the show

  1. In South LA only 60 grocery stores serve over a million people, while in the highly gentrified west side there are about 50 stores for half that population. 
  2. Food deserts aren’t only food deserts. There are design deserts, entrepreneurship deserts, and so on. That’s why this can more accurately be referred to as food apartheid.
  3. Auset tells us why she feels food apartheid is a more fitting term than food desert.
  4. Auset started SuprMarkt with less than $100 and little to no experience. Find out the one key thing she did have that drove her to succeed. 
  5. Living in South Central Los Angeles makes you 2 to 3 times more susceptible to a preventable disease, like heart disease and diabetes. All because of the lack of healthy food options. 
  6. Find out what food Auset calls God’s soda can

Links to things we talked about

If you enjoyed this episode, tune in to Feeding Your Community with Princess Haley of Appetite for Change.