Food and beverage purchases in corner stores, gas-marts, pharmacies and dollar stores

Caitlin E Caspi, Kathleen Lenk, Jennifer E Pelletier, Timothy L Barnes, Lisa Harnack, Darin J Erickson, Melissa N Laska
2016 Public Health Nutrition  
Objective Little is known about customer purchases of foods and beverages from small and non-traditional food retailers (i.e. corner stores, gas-marts, dollar stores and pharmacies). The present study aimed to: (i) describe customer characteristics, shopping frequency and reasons for shopping at small and non-traditional food retailers; and (ii) describe food/beverage purchases and their nutritional quality, including differences across store type. Design Data were collected through customer
more » ... ercept interviews. Nutritional quality of food/beverage purchases was analysed; a Healthy Eating Index-2010 (HEI-2010) score for purchases was created by aggregating participant purchases at each store. Setting Small and non-traditional food stores that were not WIC-authorized in Minneapolis and St. Paul, MN, USA. Subjects Customers (n 661) from 105 food retailers. Results Among participants, 29 % shopped at the store at least once daily; an additional 44 % shopped there at least once weekly. Most participants (74 %) cited convenient location as the primary draw to the store. Customers purchased a median of 2262 kJ (540 kcal), which varied by store type (P=0·04). The amount of added sugar far surpassed national dietary recommendations. At dollar stores, participants purchased a median of 5302 kJ (1266 kcal) for a median value of $US 2·89. Sugar-sweetened beverages were the most common purchase. The mean HEI-2010 score across all stores was 36·4. Conclusions Small and non-traditional food stores contribute to the urban food environment. Given the poor nutritional quality of purchases, findings support the need for interventions that address customer decision making in these stores.
doi:10.1017/s1368980016002524 pmid:27641618 fatcat:qat6rbaohvgqvpezhysxzokjsm