Juice Lounge Takes Action to Address Food Desert on the East Side: ‘We Needed This’

The Juice Lounge is actively addressing the persistent issue of a food desert in Buffalo’s East Side. Bernice Lee, the owner of The Juice Lounge, draws inspiration from her personal health struggles, motivating her to help others in need.

Lee, who battles lupus and kidney disease, shares that her brother discovered a demand for healthier alternatives due to the prevalent presence of fast food options. “For us, fast food was never a nutritious option,” she emphasizes.

Lee finds that undergoing treatment for her condition serves as a source of motivation for her.

“I have truly discovered the power of resilience and community advocacy since the juice bar opened,” she expressed. “I am determined to demonstrate that regardless of the health conditions one may have, natural healing is possible. A healthy gut is essential for overall well-being.”

Lee collaborates with her brother, Keyon Lee, who serves as the co-owner. According to Lee, her brother has a strong desire to uplift their community, which he believes is often neglected.

“She made the decision to leave her current job and join The Juice Lounge,” he explained. “In our neighborhood, there is a lack of healthy options. All we have are fast food restaurants and convenience store snacks. That’s why I felt it was important to bring something like this to the community.”

Rashad Fisher, a loyal customer who has been frequenting the lounge for more than a month, emphasizes the neglect of Black community health.

According to Fisher, health is a significant concern within the Black community. Many men are reluctant to seek medical attention. However, he emphasizes the importance of getting checked out and believes that initiatives like this can make a difference.

The Juice Lounge operates from 11 a.m. to 6:45 p.m. every Tuesday to Saturday at their location on 2236 Genesee Street.

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MBS Staff
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