Inadequate intake of fruits and vegetables is linked to chronic disease and obesity. However, consumption rates of fruits and vegetables in the US and specifically in Philadelphia continue to fall short of recommendations for a healthy diet. Access and price are two barriers in the food environment that prevent sufficient fruit and vegetable consumption. Farmers’ markets offer increased access to fruit and vegetables, yet continue to be perceived as being more costly than grocery stores. This study’s primary aim was to determine if the price of fruit and vegetables are more expensive at farmers’ markets than grocery stores in Philadelphia. The secondary aim was to determine if the established Jefferson Farmers’ Market Heath Education table was a suitable environment for health education and to assist in the dissemination of the price comparison results. A cross-sectional quantitative price analysis was used over nine points in time to determine if the price of fruit and vegetables at three farmers’ markets compared to three grocery stores and price data from sixteen produce items were averaged. The Jefferson Farmers’ Market 2010 Survey and on-site assessment at the farmers’ market was used to determine the utilization of the health education table by the Jefferson community. The data showed that farmers’ markets were $0.26 per pound less expensive than grocery stores. This suggests that farmers’ markets are a viable option for the purchase of produce and more economical than grocery stores. Additional results show that the Health Education table was widely utilized by the Jefferson Community. This advocates that the Jefferson Farmers’ Market Health Education table is a suitable environment for health education and to disseminate the results of the price comparison.
Recommended CitationQuinn, Anna M., "Price, Access and Education at Philadelphia Farmers' Markets" (2011). Master of Public Health Thesis and Capstone Presentations. Presentation 36.