Zoning to support farmers' markets in rural and urban communities
METHODS: For the individual-level analysis, randomly selected residents (n = 615) of three urban and three rural NC counties were surveyed using random digit dial methodology. Produce consumption was measured using the Block Fruit, Vegetable, and Fiber Screener. For the county-level analyses, zoning ordinances in 33 representative North Carolina Counties were scored to indicate supportiveness for healthy food outlets (e.g., farmers’ markets as an allowable land use in various zoned districts) using the standardized Bridging the Gap coding algorithm. To examine associations between healthy zoning scores, county-level socio-demographics, and individual-level produce consumption, we used Pearson correlation coefficients and multilevel linear regression models.
RESULTS: At the county-level, there was an inverse association between healthy zoning and rurality—indicating healthier food zoning in more urban areas (r = -0.333, p = 0.058). There was an inverse association between healthy zoning scores and percent poverty—indicating healthier food zoning in areas with less poverty (r = -0.381, p = 0.029). At the individual-level, fruit and vegetable consumption was positively associated with healthier zoning (b = 5.42, p = 0.02).
DISCUSSION: There was healthier food zoning in urban areas and in areas with less poverty, perhaps because these areas might be more likely to have resources (such as residential demand or county planning staff) to support healthy zoning.
Learning Areas:Public health or related public policy
Social and behavioral sciences
Describe the use of a standardized tool to code zoning ordinances in terms of supportiveness for healthy food access. Evaluate associations between zoning to support farmers’ markets, farmers’ market availability, and produce consumption among North Carolina residents.
Keyword(s): Nutrition, Public Policy
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the author and co-author of multiple research projects involving zoning ordinances and farmers' markets in North Carolina.
Any relevant financial relationships? Yes
|Name of Organization||Clinical/Research Area||Type of relationship|
|East Carolina University||Public Health||Independent Contractor (contracted research and clinical trials)|
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.