Translating Evidence into Policies and Practices to Promote Farmers' Market Demand among Low- Income Consumers
Methods: We conducted a systematic review of empirical research published from 1994-2014 focused on barriers to and facilitators of FM use among low-income populations. Article analysis was guided by a multicomponent framework of nutritious food access that highlights the influence of spatial-temporal, economic, service delivery, social, and personal domains on an individual’s use of FMs
Results: We identified 49 articles with FMs as the subject and focused on empirical research including qualitative and quantitative studies. Among those studies focused on low-income populations (n=20), factors driving and constraining FM demand were identified. Demand was driven by the ability to easily access the FM in the neighborhood and utilize alternative forms of payment such as food assistance benefits; the perception that FM produce was fresh and high quality; and the ability for social interactions at FMs (e.g., social event with kids, connect with farmers/vendors). Factors constraining FM demand included limited hours/season of operation; desire to have a wider variety of products available to support one-stop shopping; limited racial/ethnic/economic diversity among farmers/vendors and/or customers at the FMs; a feeling that the FM atmosphere was discriminatory; the perception that FM prices were too high; and lack of awareness of FM logistics (e.g., hours, payments accepted).
Discussion: Findings reveal levers for promoting accessibility of FMs among low-income populations. Attending to these points of access may increase the health benefits of FMs among populations experiencing health inequities.
Learning Areas:Other professions or practice related to public health
Public health or related research
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health
Identify factors that facilitate mobilization of evidence to inform policy. List factors driving farmers' market use among low-income consumers. List barriers to farmers' market use among low-income consumers.
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been principal or co-investigator on numerous studies focused on improving access to healthy foods through policy, systems, and environmental interventions. My research is focused on food access needs among racial and ethnic minority populations living in low-resource rural and urban settings. My research directly influenced policy passed at the state level to support healthy food incentive programming at farmersâ markets.
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.