Appalachian Store Owners’ and Managers’ Perspectives on the Role of Their Store in the Community and in Providing Healthier Food to the Community

Appalachian communities have lower access to healthier food sources like grocery stores. Through semi-structured interviews with owner/managers of convenience stores in Appalachian communities, this qualitative study explored perceived roles and business practices of small food retailers using a grounded theory approach. Five themes emerged including strong relationships between stores and customers, the role of the More

Conducting a Large-Scale Surveillance of Public School Environments to Advance Wellness-Related Practices, With a Focus on Rural Schools

Rural disparities in health behaviors and weight status jeopardize the well-being of millions of Americans. Compared to urban children, rural children have higher rates of obesity and consume more calories, less fruit, and fewer vegetables. A health-promoting school environment can modify risk behaviors, and periodic assessment of school environments provides crucial information about opportunities for More

Evaluation of the USDA FINI Program Finds Benefits for Consumers, Farmers and Retailers, and Local Economies

In December 2018, Congress passed a new farm bill which included a reauthorization of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) Grant Program. This brief summarizes the findings of a recent qualitative evaluation of FINI, which concludes that the program has benefits for consumers, farmers and retailers, and local economies. This More

A Qualitative Evaluation of the United States Department of Agriculture’s Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) Grant Program

This research describes findings from interviews conducted with grantees of multi-year community-based and large-scale projects funded by the FINI mechanism, as well as with stakeholders who could speak to FINI on a broader level. A total of 22 interviews were conducted with 19 organizations. Key elements addressed in this evaluation include: 1) Best practices and More

A National Research Agenda to Reduce Consumption of Sugar-Sweetened Beverages and Increase Safe Water Access and Consumption Among Zero- to Five-Year-Olds

Early childhood is a critical period for developing food preferences and dietary patterns. Despite dietary recommendations to limit or eliminate sugary drinks in early childhood, children ages 0 to 5 frequently drink these beverages. There is currently a lack of evidence on effective policy, systems, and environmental strategies to reduce sugary drink consumption and provide More

Best Practices and Innovative Solutions to Overcome Barriers to Delivering Policy, Systems and Environmental Changes in Rural Communities

This study investigated the barriers to implementing policy, systems, and environmental (PSE) change initiatives within Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program-Education (SNAP-Ed) programming in U.S. rural communities, as well as strategies to overcome these barriers. SNAP-Ed staff members across 15 states were surveyed and/or interviewed regarding the types nutrition-related PSE programming currently being implemented, barriers to implementation, More

A Supermarket Double-Dollar Incentive Program Increases Purchases of Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Among Low Income Families With Children: The Healthy Double Study

This pilot study was conducted to determine whether a supermarket double-dollar fruit and vegetable (F&V) incentive increases F&V purchases among low-income families. The study was carried out in a supermarket in a low-income rural Maine community. The participants were low-income and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) supermarket customers. The participants received a same-day coupon at More

Examining Barriers and Facilitators to Delivering SNAP-Education (SNAP-Ed) Programming in Rural Communities

This project will examine the barriers and facilitators to delivering SNAP-Ed programming in rural communities with a focus on policy, systems, and environmental (PSE) changes. The goals of this project are: 1) to identify the types of SNAP-Ed programming currently being implemented in rural communities, with a focus on PSE changes; 2) to identify barriers More

Assessing the Effectiveness of Oregon’s Farm-to-School Program in Providing Locally Grown, Nutritious Foods to Low-Income, Minority Students

In 2011, Oregon passed a Farm to School (F2S) bill which provided significant funding for F2S programs and explicitly prioritized F2S education grants for schools serving lower-income students. The aims of the study are to: 1) assess the effectiveness of Oregon’s F2S policy in increasing schools’ and districts’ perceived access to state funds and program More