|PAYNE, COLLIN - New Mexico State University|
|Whigham Grendell, Leah|
|JOHNSON, LUANN - University Of North Dakota|
|SCHEETT, ANGELA - University Of North Dakota|
|HOVERSON, BONITA - University Of North Dakota|
|KRANZ, SIBYLLE - Purdue University|
Submitted to: Nutrition
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/15/2014
Publication Date: 9/24/2014
Citation: Jahns, L.A., Payne, C.R., Whigham Grendell, L.D., Johnson, L.K., Scheett, A.J., Hoverson, B.S., Kranz, S. 2014. Foods advertised in US weekly supermarket sales circulars over one year: a content analysis. Nutrition. 13:95.
Interpretive Summary: Faced with tens of thousands of food choices, consumers frequently turn to promotional advertising, such as Sunday sales circulars, to make purchasing decisions. To date, little research has examined the content of sales circulars over multiple seasons. Food items from 12 months of Sunday sales circulars from a Midwestern grocery store chain were coded based on the four seasons and the Dietary Guidelines for Americans—as implemented by MyPyramid foodgroups; changes in relative proportions of foodgroups advertised were compared across seasons and interactions with season examined. We found some differences in the relative proportions of foodgroups and subgroups. Meat and Beans comprised the single largest group (24% of total items) compared to Milk (10%), and Vegetables (9%). Fewer Dark Green and Orange Vegetables (vs. all other Vegetables) were advertised, and the proportion changed significantly across seasons (P = 0.017). Fruits comprised 7% of foods, and over twice as much whole Fruit was offered (70%) vs. 100% Fruit juice (30%; P < 0.001). In conclusion, this study reveals variations in promotional advertising by season for some but not all foodgroups. Foods were not advertised in the proportions recommended by MyPyramid. As advertising influences many consumer choices, grocery store ads are a potential target for obesity prevention.
Technical Abstract: Objectives: The MyPyramid food guidance system is an educational tool to assist Americans in following the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA). Consumers mention print advertising—such as sales circulars—most frequently as influencing their grocery shopping decisions. The purpose of this study was to examine seasonal variations in food groups advertised in Sunday circulars and to compare the proportion of items offered to MyPyramid recommendations. Methods: Items from 12 months of Sunday sales circulars were coded based on MyPyramid and other food groups; changes in relative proportions of food groups and subgroups advertised were compared across seasons using adjusted chi-square residuals and proc GENMOD. Results: Overall, meat and beans comprised the largest group (24% of total items) compared to milk (10%), and vegetables (9%). Few dark green and orange vegetables were advertised, and the proportion changed significantly across seasons (P=.017). Fruits comprised 7% of foods; over twice as much whole fruit was advertised (70%) vs. 100% fruit juice (30%; P<.001). Conclusions: Modifying food groups represented in sales circulars while preserving retail profits may be an effective method to improve adherence to the DGA.