Date of Award
Sociology and Anthropology
Characterized by extreme poverty, limited access to fresh foods, and a high prevalence of nutrition-related disease, the rural Mississippi Delta represents an understudied and highly at-risk population in terms of food security. This paper explores the role of alternative foodways in the Delta, specifically examining the potential for farmers markets to improve community food security in rural, low- income areas. This study uses a mixed-methods approach to measure farmers market patronage among different racial and socioeconomic groups in the Mississippi Delta. The findings of this study indicate that while sociodemographic factors, such as race, income, and education are associated with consumers' awareness of farmers markets, the strength of the association between these factors and utilization of farmers markets is much lower. These findings illustrate that the factors influencing farmers market patronage are more complex than the existing literature suggests. In addition, this study demonstrates the importance of farmers market outreach and social marketing efforts in improving market accessibility for marginalized groups.
Saulters, Mary Margaret, "Farmers Markets and Food Security: A Critical Evaluation of the Sociodemographic Factors Influencing Market Patronage in the Mississippi Delta" (2013). Honors Theses. 661.