The availability and price of healthy food items in Leon County, FL
Leone, Angela Frances
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This study analyzed the availability and price of healthy foods by store type, and income level and racial composition of neighborhoods in Leon County, FL. The modified Nutrition Environment Measures Survey in Stores was used to collect store audit data in 73 stores across the county (28.8% supermarkets, 11.0% grocery stores, and 60.3% convenience stores). Availability of all four healthy food items was different by store type (P<0.001). Overall, supermarkets provided the cheapest price for the majority of fresh produce, low-fat milk, and whole-grain bread. Availability of half of the fresh produce was significantly different by income level (P<0.05), but no trends were seen for the availability or price of healthy food items by neighborhood racial composition. This study suggests that store type is the most influential factor affecting the availability and price of healthy foods. Individuals that do not have adequate access to supermarkets may have limited ability to purchase healthful foods.