239821 Factors related to consumer grocery and produce purchases in Northwest Ohio

Monday, October 31, 2011

Debra Boardley, PhD , Department of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH
Paula Ross, MBA , Urban Affairs Center, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH
Jeanette Eckert, MS , Urban Affairs Center, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH
Sarah Hallsky, MEd , Department of Health Education, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH
Introduction: Access to a variety of healthy foods is an important component to health. A plant based diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables is recommended. NW Ohio has high rates of obesity and other diet related chronic diseases. The objective of this study is to investigate consumer attitudes and behaviors when shopping for groceries and produce. Results could be used to more effectively market healthy food. Methods: Subjects were randomly selected from a 6 county area in NW Ohio. Data were collected using a 22 question telephone survey that required approximately 20 minutes to complete. It was determined that 340 completed surveys would give a +/- 5% margin of error. RDD (random digit dialing) data sets were purchased for the target counties. Trained researchers used WinCATI software to dial numbers at random and subject responses were entered directly into the software.

Results: Responses will be used to increase understanding of factors that influence grocery and produce purchases. These factors include: where consumers shop, factors that influence where they shop, how much consumers spend, how far consumers travel for grocery shopping, most desirable characteristics of produce, perception of local and organic food, and use of low income nutrition programs. Discussion: Understanding attitudes and behaviors regarding grocery and produce purchases can be used to ensure healthy food is available in ways that are most acceptable to consumers. Consumer selection of healthy food can lead to healthier people.

Learning Areas:
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
List at least 5 factors that influence consumer choices when shopping for groceries and produce. Discuss consumer definitions of local and organic foods. Describe at least 3 factors that influence produce purchases.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Have a PhD in Public Health from University of South Carolina, have 17 years experience in teaching and research at the University of Toledo and have strong record of professional journal publications and professional abstract presentations
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.