142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

Assessing the Impact of Farmers' Markets among Refugees and Immigrants in Underserved Communities: A Systematic Review

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Monday, November 17, 2014 : 12:30 PM - 12:45 PM

Rebecca Paida, MPH(c) , School of Public Health, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA
Diadrey-Anne Sealy, PhD , School of Public Health, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA
Refugees and immigrants face many unique health challenges as they transition to a foreign culture in the United States. This culture includes different diets which are often deficient in fresh produce. This type of restrictive diet contributes to over-and under-nutrition among these populations which results in chronic conditions including obesity, diabetes, and hypertension. Lifestyle diseases such as these can be alleviated with increased consumption of familiar fresh fruits and vegetables that are available at farmers’ markets.  Farmers' markets have increased dramatically in many communities; this popularity has been advantageous especially in low-income communities where a majority of refugees and immigrants reside.   

A systematic review of the literature was conducted to assess the accessibility of farmers’ markets among refugees and immigrants and its impact on health related behaviors and chronic illnesses. Four databases EBSCO, PsychINFO, CINAHL, and PubMed were searched from 2003-2013 using specific key terms related to access to farmers’ market among underserved, immigrant, and refugee populations. Twenty-five papers that met the study requirements were retrieved and reviewed.

The articles revealed that farmers’ markets lessen food insecurity among refugees and immigrants in low income neighborhoods, as well as, encourage consumption of more fresh produce and lowered cost for residents. Further, the increased access to fresh produce through electronic benefit transfer and additional incentives encourage frequent visits to farmers' markets.  Recommendations include, the inclusion of farmers’ market promotion among resettlement agencies and organizations that work with refugees and immigrant communities, as well as, provision of more farmers’ markets in underserved communities.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related education

Learning Objectives:
Identify the benefits of access to farmers' markets among refugee and immigrant populations in underserved communities.

Keyword(s): Refugees, Food Security

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I conducted the research and have extensive background in working with refugee and immigrant communities.
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.