Perceptions of Rural SNAP-Authorized Food Store Owners and Managers About Healthy Product Availability


Houghtaling, B.; Serrano, E.; Dobson, L.; Kraak, V.I.; Harden, S.M.; Davis, G.C.; Misyak, S.


Objective: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)–authorized retailers’ healthy perceptions and store availability of healthy products were explored to plan a healthy food retail program. Methods: Cognitive anthropology (free list) and quantitative (food environment measure) methods were used to assess retailers’ healthy product perceptions and the availability of store products aligned with dietary guidance. Cultural domain analysis techniques and descriptive and inferential statistics were used to interpret data. Results: SNAP–authorized retailers (n = 29) of rural grocery (17%), dollar (14%), convenience (66%), and specialty (3%) stores participated. There was low salience for what constituted healthy and misalignments with dietary guidance and inventory. Dried beans, nuts, and seeds were widely available products across all stores and were listed less frequently by retailers. Conclusions and Implications: Engagement with SNAP–authorized retailers to develop retailer-focused nutrition education and/or training protocols is warranted to improve the capacity for retailers to market store products aligned with dietary guidance. © 2019 Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior


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