The Influence of the WIC Food Package Changes on the Retail Food Environment in New Orleans
By Rose D, O'Malley K, Dunaway L, Bodor J
Objective: To examine the effect of the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) food package changes on availability of healthy foods in small stores.
Design: Pre–post comparison group design with repeat in-store observations.
Setting: New Orleans.
Participants: Small stores (n = 102; 77% of total) were visited in 2009. Of these, 91% were observed again in 2010, including both WIC (n = 27) and non-WIC (n = 66) stores.
Intervention: The 2009 WIC food package changes to include healthier foods.
Main Outcome Measures: Change in store availability of fruits, vegetables, lower-fat milks, whole wheat bread, and brown rice. Change in number of varieties and shelf length of fruits and vegetables.
Analysis: Difference-in-differences analysis using logit models for change in availability and regression models for change in number of varieties or shelf length.
Results: The WIC stores were more likely to improve availability of lower-fat milks than non-WIC stores (adjusted odds ratio, 5.0, 95% confidence interval, 1.2—21.0). An even greater relative improvement was seen with whole grains. The WIC stores showed a relative increase in number of varieties of fresh fruits (0.9 ± 0.3; P < .01) and shelf length of vegetables (1.2 ± 0.4 meters; P < .01).
Conclusions and Implications: Results suggest that WIC changes improved the availability of healthy foods in small stores in New Orleans. Similar changes throughout the country could have a significant impact on neighborhood food environments.
November 20, 2017
Rose D, O'Malley K, Dunaway L, Bodor J (2014) 'The Influence of the WIC Food Package Changes on the Retail Food Environment in New Orleans'. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior: Vol. 46, Issue 3, Supplement, pp. S38-S44. Available online: https://www.jneb.org/article/S1499-4046(14)00056-6/fulltext