Submitted to: Journal of Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/19/2005
Publication Date: 4/2/2005
Citation: Yadrick, K., Connell, C., Simpson, P., Goel, R., Gossett, J., Goolsby, S., Kramer, T.R., Bogle, M.L., McGee, B. 2005. Fats and sweets more available than fruits and vegetables in the rural Mississippi Delta [abstract]. The Federation of American Society for Experimental Biology. 19(5):A978. Abstract No. 574.6.
Technical Abstract: Research suggests that monetary costs of dietary energy may encourage the purchase of low-cost energy sources like fats and sweets discourage purchase of fruits and vegetables, particularly by those with limited income. Purchase of fats and sweets may be further encouraged by their greater availability in food stores serving low income populations. This survey of 225 rural food stores (62 supermarkets, 77 small/medium and 86 convenience) in an 18-county high poverty area compared availability of food items by food group using a 102 item food basket, of which 81 items were from the USDA Thrifty Food Plan food lists. For all stores, 59.2+0.9% of fats and sweets items were available, compared with 35.7+0.77% of fruit and vegetable items. Availability of fats and sweets items vs. fruits and vegetables was 96.0+0.4% vs 90.8+0.5%; 66.1+1.3% vs. 40.4+1.4%, and 43.6+1.6% vs. 16.5+1.2% for supermarkets, small/medium, and convenience stores respectively. Fruit drink, granulated sugar, whole milk and white bread were the most available items, found in >90% of stores, whereas orange juice, skim milk and whole wheat bread were available in 28.0%, 20.9%, and 23.4% of stores, respectively. Environmental barriers may play as important a role as personal behavioral choices in increasing fruit and vegetable consumption among low income populations. Supported by USDA, ARS Project #6251-53000-004-00D.