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2018 Healthy Retail Access Program

Are you looking to make a positive change and improve your business? Do you want to increase fresh and healthy food in your store? Are you passionate about healthy food access issues? If so, the City of Madison's Healthy Food Retail Access Program may be for you!

The 2018 Healthy Retail Access Program was created by the Healthy Retail Work Group of the Madison Food Policy Council with the mission of accomplishing the following goals:

  • Increase the availability of healthy food
  • Improve access to existing grocery retailers
  • Provide new affordable grocery distribution options
  • Assist in marketing healthy food
  • Plan for new healthy retail

This year's program makes funds available for healthy retail projects that aim to improve access to affordable, healthy, and culturally appropriate retail within underserved areas. Each project must be located within or directly benefit residents within the priority areas, as defined in the “Food Access Improvement Map—Areas of Focus” (see map). The 2018 Healthy Retail Access Program offers several benefits to businesses and customers including an expanded healthy inventory, a broader customer base, increased sales, and greater visibility.

The city is seeking applications for the available funds in 2018.


Examples of Eligible Projects

Still wondering how the program works? Here are some examples of eligible projects!

  • SNAP EXAMPLE: A retailer can use funding to purchase equipment to accept SNAP and to make purchases to increase the depth of stock to adhere to SNAP requirements.
  • SHUTTLE EXAMPLE: Funds could be used by a full-service supermarket or an organization partnering with a supermarket to provide low or no-cost transportation (shuttle) between established food retailers and priority neighborhoods.
  • EQUIPMENT EXAMPLE: Funds could be used for physical and equipment improvements for existing food retailers that enhance the ability of small-and medium-sized retailers to gain customers and / or offer high quality produce and other healthy foods.
  • NONTRADITIONAL DISTRIBUTION EXAMPLE: Funds could be used to cover equipment or initial operations costs for bulk buying clubs, mobile grocers, or other nontraditional grocery vendors serving priority neighborhoods.

Who can apply to the program?

Are you wondering if you're eligible to apply? If you meet the criteria below the 2018 Healthy Retail Access Program is for you!

  • Food retailers (e.g. grocery stores, large convenience stores, cooperatives, etc.).
  • Organizations directly partnering with food retailers to coordinate a food access related project or technical assistance to eligible retailers (e.g. chambers of commerce, retailer groups, 501(c)(3), other non-profits, etc.).


If you would like to apply, please submit your application to the Mayor's Office via email (, by mail or hand-delivered (210 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd., Room 403), c/o George Reistad, Food Policy Director. The City will accept and consider applications on a rolling basis, based on the availability of funds. Please read the overview to applicants below for more information.

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