Innumerable Oxxos

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Innumerable Oxxos

An Oxxo about to open in Las Aguas, beside the Plaza del Periodista.
Get your junk food fix here: An Oxxo
window on 19th street.

Beside La Plaza del Periodista, a new Oxxo appears. There’s already one on the other side of the plaza, as well as another down 19th St., as well as a half-dozen more around La Candelaria.

Is there no limit to the market for the sort of refined, high-fat, high-salt and alchoholic fare which Oxxo specializes in?

Buy doritos!

Most likely, Oxxo’s plan is to take away from the neighborhood stores this vice segment of the industry  – which I imagine is also the most profitable segment. Once they’ve lost their most profitable sales, the family-run stores will die, depriving the neighborhood of the healthy fruits and vegetables they sell, but which are too troublesome for Oxxo to bother with. This produces what in the U.S. is called a ‘healthy food desert.’

But taking sales from the traditional stores can’t be the whole story. The market for things which ruin

A family-run neighborhood shop, featuring
fruits and vegetables.

our health, like sugar, salt and fat-packed foods, tobacco and etc., must be pretty elastic. Push fat, salt, sweets and alchohol in people’s (and particularly children’s) faces and – surprise, surprise – they’ll buy more of them.

Who wins? Oxxo and the junk food industry, and Carlos Slim, the Mexican billionare who owns the chain.

Who loses? Our health.

Across the plaza, another Oxxo.

By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours

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