In 2009, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) was modified to align the WIC food packages with the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. As part of the revisions, WIC added a fruit and vegetable (F/V) voucher to the food packages. This paper describes a quasi-experimental study that examined whether F/V prices at stores authorized to accept WIC decreased after the policy revision in seven Illinois counties. The study also examined F/V price variations by store type and neighborhood characteristics. Overall, researchers found that canned and frozen vegetable prices decreased after the policy change, particularly at small stores. Chain supermarkets and mass merchandise stores (e.g., Walmart) had lower canned and frozen F/V prices, but higher fresh F/V prices compared with small stores and non-chain supermarkets. Researchers found limited price differences across neighborhoods. Although canned vegetables were more expensive in neighborhoods with greater proportions of either Hispanic or Blacks, fresh F/V prices were lower in neighborhoods with higher concentrations of Hispanics.
Published: October 2013
ID #: 65852
Journal: J Acad Nutr Diet
Authors: Zenk SN, Powell LM, Odoms-Young AM, et al
Resource Type: Journal Article
Evaluating the Impact of a WIC Food Package Revision on Retailer Participation and Fruit/Vegetable Supply Characteristics in Northern IllinoisThe U.S. Department of Agriculture will implement a ground-breaking new policy by October 1, 2009 that adds a cash-value voucher for fruits and vegetables to the food packages provided in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (also known as WIC). This provides a rare opportunity to assess the effect of a More