Online Program

Changing checkout: Implementing point of sales (POS) systems in Philadelphia corner stores

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Candace R. Young, MS, The Food Trust, Philadelphia, PA
Kenji Tabery, The Food Trust, Philadelphia, PA
Yi-Ming Law, Research and Evaluation, The Food Trust, Philadelphia, PA
Brianna Almaguer Sandoval, MSSP, Healthy Corner Store Initiative, The Food Trust, Philadelphia, PA
Jennifer Aquilante, MPH, RD, LDN, Nutrition and Physical Activity, Get Healthy Philly Initiative, Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Philadelphia, PA
Sandra Sherman, EdD, The Food Trust, Philadelphia, PA
Gary Foster, Ph.D., Center for Obesity Research and Education, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA
Allison Karpyn, PhD, The Food Trust, Philadelphia, PA
INTRODUCTION: Nationally, there is growing interest in understanding the role that corner stores play in the diets of nearby residents. However, there are few objective data or systems to collect this type of information from stores. Corner stores tend be informal, cash-based operations. Stores cannot report reliable, detailed sales or inventory information. To date, research on corner store purchases has relied on manual collection of inventory data and intercepts of store customers. METHODS: Point of Sales (POS) systems, including touch screens and scanners, were implemented in 6 corner stores over a 10-month period to determine the effectiveness and reliability of this data collection method. A product database was built by scanning all stores' inventory to create a database of items and basic nutrition data. Reports were generated of quantities of items sold. RESULTS: Over 10,000 products were entered in the product database. Analysis of quantity sold at baseline found that snacks and beverages were the most common purchases (31.5% and 23.4%, respectively). Produce accounted for 1.3% of sales. DISCUSSION: Philadelphia's Healthy Corner Store Initiative is one of the largest in the country and is among the first to implement POS systems in corner stores that will result in real-time, objective reporting of store sales. POS systems are a viable method for measuring sales in corner stores and provide great power for measuring changes in purchase decisions. Implementing and maintaining these systems requires day-to-day oversight and hands-on training for store owners.

Learning Areas:

Communication and informatics
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning

Learning Objectives:
Describe the role of Point of Sales (POS) system technology in building capacity to research and evaluate healthy corner store initiatives. Identify challenges, best practices and factors for success in implementing POS systems in corner stores. Analyze potential marketing efforts to increase sales of healthier options in corner stores.

Keyword(s): Food and Nutrition

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have served as a researcher at The Food Trust for close to 5 years and have focused on corner store, farmers' market and other food access work.
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.

Back to: 4171.0: Food Environment & Marketing