Critics have blasted FreshDirect’s government-subsidized move from Queens to the Bronx as a waste of taxpayer dollars with little benefit to local residents, as well as a serious health issue since more delivery trucks could exacerbate the borough’s already high asthma rates. So this week the online grocer is striking back with a new web site, www.freshdirectfacts.com, which defends the $127.8 million in city and state subsidies and posts a slew of positive newspaper editorials, supportive quotes and upbeat press releases. The web site also touts 3,000 “good-paying jobs” created or retained, the development of greener trucks and the economic boost from construction and other jobs. “One of the things the site does is address misinformation around FreshDirect’s move to the Bronx,” a company spokesman said. But critics remain unmoved. “I think they’re trying to make up for the fact that they’re just not a good corporate citizen,” Bettina Damiani, of Good Jobs New York, said after perusing the site. “They threatened to go to New Jersey unless New Yorkers gave them more money.”
This piece first appeared in City & State’s Heard Around Town, April 24, 2012. To read more from City & State click here.
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