Honors Theses

Date of Award

Spring 5-1-2021

Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis

Department

Nutrition and Hospitality Management

First Advisor

Georgianna Mann

Second Advisor

Anne Cafer

Third Advisor

Melinda Valliant

Relational Format

Dissertation/thesis

Abstract

Some areas of the United States have poorer food environments than others. The Mississippi Delta has limited access to nutritious food, often relying on corner stores for sustenance. The impact of a poor diet can increase chronic disease prevalence, creating additional barriers to health and nutrition for Mississippians. The purpose of this study was to document and explore the rural food environment and discuss urban intervention studies in light of the current state of stores in the Delta. An adapted version of the Baltimore Healthy Kids survey and store impact questionnaire was used to record owner perceptions and food availability.

Findings suggest that there is a lack of adequate amounts and types of food needed for a nutritious diet in northwest Mississippi corner stores. Stores also faced challenges in selecting and stocking healthy foods, such as facing low customer demand and obtaining proper storage. The results of this study are similar to a pre-interventional status of Baltimore stores. They suggest a lack of nutritious options, making northwest Mississippi stores appropriate targets for intervention. A rural corner store intervention with modifications that address regional barriers to nutrition could be an effective method to improve access and consumption of a nutritious diet in the Delta.

Available for download on Saturday, April 16, 2022

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