Submitted to: Journal of Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/12/2003
Publication Date: 4/23/2004
Citation: Yadrick, K., Simpson, P., Bogle, M.L., Hall, R., Beardshall, A., McGee, B., Goolsby, S. 2004. Limited availability of food choices in the Lower Mississippi Delta [abstract]. Journal of Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. 18(4):A513.
Technical Abstract: Recent research has suggested empirical relationships between dietary quality and food availability and access at the community level. Food availability was surveyed in 228 rural food stores (64 supermarkets, 78 small/medium, and 86 convenience) in a tri-state 18-county area characterized by high rates of poverty and chronic disease. Food availability included the components variety, nutritional adequacy, quality, and cultural acceptability. The instrument was adapted from USDA's Food Retailer Characteristics Study and Thrifty Food Plan (TFP) food lists. It included 106 food items, 67 designated as the TFP food basket. Stores were surveyed by trained surveyors during summer 2001, using a previously pilot-tested protocol. Data were analyzed using weights to reflect the stratified sampling. More than 95% of TFP food basket items were available in supermarkets, vs. 49.6% in small/medium and 28.1% in convenience stores. In small/medium stores only 26.2% of meat, fish, and poultry items and 42.4% of fruit and vegetable items were available compared to 71.4% of items in the fats and sweets category. For 38 items evaluated on 2 variety measures, only 13.7 - 16.1% of items were available in adequate variety, for all store types. Lack of availability of food choices in this southern rural region may limit selection of a nutritionally adequate diet. Supported by USDA, ARS Project #6251-53000-003-00D