Bill creating healthy food study headed to Barbour

JACKSON — A bill headed to Republican Gov. Haley Barbour’s desk would create an advisory committee to study areas of the state with limited access to healthy food and make recommendations on how to solve the problem.

Rep. Toby Barker, a Republican from Hattiesburg who filed the bill, said he got the idea after attending a conference last fall. Barker said experts blamed a lack of physical exercise and a lack of access to healthy foods as the main contributors to obesity.

Under the bill, a 15-member committee will research the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables and make recommendations for creating a statewide financing program to bring fresh food retailers into underserved areas.

***

The bill is House Bill 1170

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.

The Associated Press