Healthfulness of Foods Advertised in Small and Nontraditional Urban Stores in Minneapolis–St. Paul, Minnesota, 2014
Published Date:Nov 10 2016
Source:Prev Chronic Dis. 13.
Pubmed Central ID:PMC5109932
Funding:R01 DK104348/DK/NIDDK NIH HHS/United States
R25 CA163184/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
U54 HD070725/HD/NICHD NIH HHS/United States
UL1 TR000114/TR/NCATS NIH HHS/United States
Shopping at small food stores, such as corner stores and convenience stores, is linked with unhealthful food and beverage purchases, poor diets, and high risk of obesity. However, information on how foods and beverages are marketed at small stores is limited. The objective of this study was to examine advertisements and product placements for healthful and less healthful foods and beverages at small stores in Minneapolis–St. Paul, Minnesota.
We conducted in-store audits of 119 small and nontraditional food retailers (corner/small grocery stores, food–gas marts, pharmacies, and dollar stores) randomly selected from licensing lists in Minneapolis–St. Paul in 2014. We analyzed data on exterior and interior advertisements of foods and beverages and product placement.
Exterior and interior advertisements for healthful foods and beverages were found in less than half of stores (exterior, 37% [44 of 119]; interior, 20% [24 of 119]). Exterior and interior advertisements for less healthful items were found in approximately half of stores (exterior, 46% [55 of 119]); interior, 66% [78 of 119]). Of the 4 store types, food–gas marts were most likely to have exterior and interior advertisements for both healthful and less healthful items. Corner/small grocery stores and dollar stores had fewer advertisements of any type. Most stores (77%) had at least 1 healthful item featured as an impulse buy (ie, an item easily reached at checkout), whereas 98% featured at least 1 less healthful item as an impulse buy.
Findings suggest imbalanced advertising and product placement of healthful and less healthful foods and beverages at small food stores in Minneapolis–St. Paul; less healthful items were more apt to be featured as impulse buys. Future interventions and polices should encourage reductions in advertisements and impulse-buy placements of unhealthful products, particularly in food–gas marts, and encourage advertisements of healthful products.
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