ASI Says Some CDFI Money Going to Fight ‘Food Deserts’
The $302 million ASI Federal Credit Union said some of the more than $3.4 million it is receiving from the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund will go to fight “food deserts” by improving access to healthy food in underserved areas of its field of membership in the New Orleans area.
Twenty-four credit unions or credit union organizations received grant assistance from the CDFI fund in the latest round of funding, the CDFI fund announced last week.
The 22 credit unions and two credit union organizations, the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions and El Paso Credit Union Affordable Housing LLC, represented 13 states. Collectively they received roughly $15.3 million or a bit more than 10% of the more than $149 million the Fund distributed.
ASI said $2 million of its grant would go to low-interest loans to existing grocers to help them improve their inventory of fresh fruit and vegetables. There will also be loans available to help plan and launch more grocery stores in those areas.
ASI is one of only 12 financial institutions and other organizations in the country eligible for the funding under the Obama Administration's Healthy Food Financing Initiative, an umbrella program of Departments of Treasury, Agriculture and Health and Human Services.