MT2: Food Resource Management*

Framework Component

Changes – Nutrition-Related Behavioral Changes

Indicator Description

Changes in individual and family behaviors that reflect smarter shopping and food resource management strategies, enabling participants to stretch their food resource dollars to support a healthier diet.

*SNAP-Ed Priority Outcome Indicator

Background and Context

Indicator MT2 measures behavioral changes resulting from smarter shopping and food resource management (FRM) strategies used when purchasing foods for consumption at home. State SNAP Agencies will particularly find the results of this indicator useful in ensuring SNAP participants, or those who are potentially eligible, are stretching their food dollars and making healthful purchases.

Similar to MT1, this indicator measures changes reported by participants before and after participation in a series of nutrition education and food resource management classes. Two common survey questions for this indicator are using nutrition facts labels or shopping with a grocery list. A more sophisticated interpretation of this measure entails multiple survey questions using a Likert-type scale. Using multiple measures of related behavioral changes strengthens the likelihood of determining that participants are more frequently using targeted shopping and food resource management practices.

Outcome Measures

The number or percentage of participants reporting a food resource management behavior during the period assessed, the frequency, and the type of behavior(s):

Healthful Shopping Practices:

MT2a. Choose healthy foods for my family on a budget
MT2b. Read nutrition facts labels or nutrition ingredients lists
MT2c. Buy 100 percent whole grain products
MT2d. Buy low-fat dairy or milk products
MT2e. Buy foods with lower added:

2e1. Solid fats (saturated and/or trans)
2e2. Sugar
2e3. Salt/sodium

MT2f. Buy fruits and vegetables—fresh, frozen, dried or canned in 100% juice

Stretch Food Dollars:

MT2g. Not run out of food before month’s end
MT2h. Compare prices before buying foods
MT2i.  Identify foods on sale or use coupons to save money
MT2j. Shop with a list
MT2k. Batch cook (cook once; eat many times)
MT2l. Use unit pricing to find best values
MT2m. Cook healthy foods on a budget

What to Measure

SNAP-Ed participants who report one or more targeted food resource management behaviors during the period assessed. Choose at least one outcome measure from the list provided, and select a measurement approach based upon the type of survey question and responses. For a description on ordinal and nominal outcomes, please see Appendix F. Evaluators should prioritize survey questions that provide a range of options, often appearing in a Likert scale or along a continuum, such as frequency responses (e.g., never, seldom, sometimes, etc.) that use a Likert-type scale. These response options are more sensitive to detecting change than questions with “yes” or “no” answers.

At present, there is no standardized survey instrument or composite score used in SNAP-Ed programming due to the variety of curricula and population subgroups served. However, Land-grant Institutions (cooperative extension system) that conduct Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) classes, as well as other Implementing Agencies, may find it practical and cost-effective to use the same EFNEP food resource management questions in SNAP-Ed. Evaluators are also encouraged to measure the degree of correlation among the individual measures presented in this indicator.

Population

Adults (ages 18+) and high school students or transitional-aged youth who are the primary shoppers/meal preparers

Surveys and Data Collection Tools


http://townsendlab.ucdavis.edu/

  • Do you run out of food before the end of the month [MT2fg]
    • Responses: no; yes, sometimes; yes, often; yes, always
  • Do you use this label when food shopping? [image of Nutrition Facts Label] [MT2b]
    • Responses: no; yes, sometimes; yes, often; yes, always


http://uccalfresh.org/

  • How often do you compare unit prices before you buy food? [MT2g]
    • Responses: never, seldom, sometimes, most of the time, almost always
  • How often do you shop with a grocery list? [MT2j]
    • Responses: never, seldom, sometimes, most of the time, almost always
  • How often do you use the “Nutrition Facts” on the food label to make food choices? [MT2b]
    • Responses: never, seldom, sometimes, most of the time, almost always


http://townsendlab.ucdavis.edu/

  • I choose healthy foods for my family. [MT2a]
    • Responses: no, sometimes, often, very often, almost always
  • I shop with a list. [MT2j]
    • Responses: no, sometimes, often, very often, almost always
  • I compare prices. [MT2h]
    • Responses: no, sometimes, often, very often, almost always
  • I run out of food before the end of the month. [MT2g]
    • Responses: no, sometimes, often, very often, almost always
  • I use this food label [image of Nutrition Facts Label] [MT2b]
    • Responses: no, sometimes, often, very often, almost always


https://foodshuttlesatellites.wordpress.com/forms/cooking-matters-resources/surveys/

  • How often do you compare prices before you buy food? [MT2h]
    • Responses: never, rarely, sometimes, often, always, does not apply
  • How often do you use a grocery list when you go grocery shopping? [MT2j]
    • Responses: never, rarely, sometimes, often, always, does not apply
  • How often do you adjust meals to include specific ingredients that are more “budget-friendly,” like on sale or in your refrigerator or pantry? [MT2i, m]
    • Responses: never, rarely, sometimes, often, always, does not apply

Additional evaluation tools to measure MT2 can be found in the SNAP-Ed Library.

Key Glossary Terms

Additional Resources or Supporting Citations

The Food and Nutrition Service’s SNAP-Ed Connection maintains a page of resources on Food Resource Management:
https://snaped.fns.usda.gov/professional-development-tools/hot-topics-z/food-resource-management

https://snaped.fns.usda.gov/resource-library/handouts-and-web-sites/meal-planning-shopping-and-budgeting

Barale K. Food Resource Management: An Evaluation of Measures of Behavior Change for EFNEP Participants.
https://www2.ag.purdue.edu/programs/hhs/efnep/Conferences/1A%20Barale%20FRM%20eval%20of%20behavior%20change%20Poster.pdf

Hersey J, Anliker J, Miller C, Mullis RM, Daugherty S, Das S, et al. Food Shopping Practices Are Associated with Dietary Quality in Low-Income Households. Journal of Nutrition Education 2001; 33(Supplement 1):S16-S26. Available at: http://www.jneb.org/article/S1499-4046(06)60066-3/abstract.