Healthier stores in the context of a broader community intervention improved purchasing behaviors in 3 low income communities
Methods – Between 2011 and 2014, changes to store environments were assessed using standardized observation tools and purchase data were collected via consumer intercept survey (n=1438). At endpoint, store managers were interviewed regarding financial and other outcomes. Significance of change in purchases was determined by logistic regression.
Results –The extent of store redesign, changes in product mix and use of marketing strategies varied widely. Significant reductions in purchases of sweets and chips were seen in several stores; 2 stores experienced increases in produce purchases. Soda--but not overall sugar-sweetened beverage-- purchases decreased significantly. Changes in purchases were consistent with the changes made in the stores. Store managers were unanimously enthusiastic about the program.
Discussion – Small store conversions in the context of a larger community effort had modest positive impacts on consumer purchases. Reduction in purchases of unhealthy foods were more common than increases in healthy food purchases. Changes in beverage purchases suggest that interventions should not focus exclusively on soda. Results indicate that the type of store, the extent to which there is room for improvement, types of changes made to the store environment, and community involvement are important factors to consider when planning these interventions.
Learning Areas:Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Explain how improvements to the stores affected consumer purchases. Describe store manager perceptions of the impact and viability of the corner store conversions. Demonstrate how factors such as the nature of the intervention and store characteristics are related to changes in consumer purchasing behavior.
Keyword(s): Built Environment, Nutrition
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have 15 years experience conducting evaluations of community and school based interventions to prevent obesity and support healthy eating and active living. I directed the research which is the topic of this presentation.
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.