Evaluating the Impact of WIC Voucher Changes on Low-Income Families and Neighborhoods
Major policy changes in WIC voucher provision for a wide range of healthy foods has the potential to impact the more than eight million U.S. families that receive WIC benefits as well as the food environment in low-income neighborhoods. In December 2008, investigators began conducting baseline research about the food choices that WIC participants make, the availability of healthy foods in corner stores and supermarkets, and the challenges facing small store owners/managers with the voucher changes. With this study, investigators will repeat the survey of food stores after the voucher changes take effect in order to assess their impact on the availability of fruits and vegetables, whole-grain foods and other foods included in the new WIC package. Research methods will include surveys of food stores and semi-structured interviews and focus groups with store managers and owners.
This article examines the impact of the 2009 food package changes for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) on the availability of healthful foods in two lower-income urban neighborhoods in Philadelphia. Each year, WIC provides more than 9 million pregnant and breast-feeding women, infants, and … More
The healthfulness of foods and beverages found in retail food stores differs widely across the United States, both by location of the store as well as by store type. Some communities have limited access to stores that carry healthful staple foods such as fruits and vegetables, whole grain-rich foods, and … More
This article describes and addresses the challenges researchers face when utilizing natural experimental studies to evaluate changes to the retail food environment. Through the use of case studies, the article describes strategies and approaches for overcoming these challenges. The challenges are divided into categories of: 1) study design and analysis; … More