Senator Serrano took part in the fifth annual Bronx Food Festival on Monday afternoon. The festival highlights community efforts to increase the availability and appeal of nutritious foods offered at local food establishments.
"This festival is about more than just food: It's about improving health in our communities, and it's about businesses addressing consumer demands," said the Senator. "We can reduce preventable disease, and we can reduce how much we pay in healthcare costs, with more nutritious food options."
He praised the Bronx Healthy Reach and Bronx Healthy Hearts programs, which sponsor the festival as part of the larger Institute for Family Health organization. "Under the leadership of Dr. Neil Calman, the Institute has developed into a vital community partner. I cannot overstate their contributions to the Bronx."
This year's event featured 15 participating restaurants offering healthier food options throughout the week, and beyond. Five bodegas and, for the first time, a chain restaurant also participated.
"The communities I represent in East Harlem and the South Bronx have terrible access to nutritious food," said the Senator. "We can change that, by engaging with our supermarkets, our bodegas and our restaurants."
He added: "I applaud the Institute for not just identifying a problem, but coming up with dynamic ways to solve it."