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Grant Details

Grant Number: 4R01CA180336-04 Interpret this number
Primary Investigator: Wilcox, Sara
Organization: University Of South Carolina At Columbia
Project Title: Evaluating a Food Hub's Impact on Food Access, Diet and Weight in a Food Desert
Fiscal Year: 2016


DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Low access to healthy food is associated with poor diet and increased obesity. The scarcity of healthy food outlets in disadvantaged communities has led to local and national initiatives to increase healthy food access. It is unknown if locatin supermarkets or other outlets for healthy foods in these areas, called "food deserts," will improve diet quality. One such food outlet is the food hub, an outlet for locally produced food that typically have healthy food access, local food security, economic development and community education and training as goals. They are an alternative to supermarket chains that are often unwilling to locate in areas of high poverty. The goal of this research is to evaluate th impact of a food hub in a food desert community in South Carolina. The food hub will include a farmers' market, urban farm, mobile market, cafe and classrooms for community nutrition education and culinary arts job training. It will employ 23 local people and seeks to increase access to local produce and other food products produced on-site. The study will enroll 280 primary food shoppers from the surrounding community and 280 from a control group from a distant community matched on characteristics such as poverty, racial composition and access to healthy food. In-person interviews will be conducted with the 560 participants before the food hub's opening and again at 12 and 24 months to assess dietary intake, body weight, perceptions of the community food environment and food shopping habits, as well as a number of other social and attitudinal measures related to dietary choices. Global Positioning System and Geographic Information Systems technology will be use to assess the two communities' food environment and to calculate measures such as distance from participants' residences to various types of food outlets (for example, grocery store, convenience store, farmers' market , and fast food restaurant). Additional analyses of sales figures and questionnaires from shoppers present on randomly selected days at the food hub's farmers' market will indicate if residents of the surrounding food desert represent an increasing proportion of customers. Community leaders will provide their impressions of the food hub's impact on the community and its successes and challenges through focus groups and interviews.


Persistence and transience of food insecurity and predictors among residents of two disadvantaged communities in South Carolina.
Authors: Liese A.D. , Sharpe P.A. , Bell B.A. , Hutto B. , Stucker J. , Wilcox S. .
Source: Appetite, 2021-06-01; 161, p. 105128.
EPub date: 2021-01-26.
PMID: 33513414
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Socioeconomic factors associated with diet quality and meeting dietary guidelines in disadvantaged neighborhoods in the Southeast United States.
Authors: Wilcox S. , Sharpe P.A. , Liese A.D. , Dunn C.G. , Hutto B. .
Source: Ethnicity & health, 2020 Nov; 25(8), p. 1115-1131.
EPub date: 2018-07-02.
PMID: 29966432
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Effects of a food hub initiative in a disadvantaged community: A quasi-experimental evaluation.
Authors: Sharpe P.A. , Bell B.A. , Liese A.D. , Wilcox S. , Stucker J. , Hutto B.E. .
Source: Health & place, 2020 May; 63, p. 102341.
EPub date: 2020-04-24.
PMID: 32543428
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Food Acquisition and Shopping Patterns among Residents of Low-Income and Low-Access Communities in South Carolina.
Authors: Ma X. , Sharpe P.A. , Bell B.A. , Liu J. , White K. , Liese A.D. .
Source: Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, 2018 Oct; 118(10), p. 1844-1854.
EPub date: 2018-07-24.
PMID: 30049654
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Household food security and use of community food sources and food assistance programs among food shoppers in neighborhoods of low income and low food access.
Authors: Sharpe P.A. , Liese A.D. , Bell B.A. , Wilcox S. , Hutto B.E. , Stucker J. .
Source: Journal of hunger & environmental nutrition, 2018; 13(4), p. 482-496.
EPub date: 2017-10-24.
PMID: 30854155
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The Association between Food Security and Store-Specific and Overall Food Shopping Behaviors.
Authors: Ma X. , Liese A.D. , Hibbert J. , Bell B.A. , Wilcox S. , Sharpe P.A. .
Source: Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, 2017 Dec; 117(12), p. 1931-1940.
EPub date: 2017-03-30.
PMID: 28366811
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Food Shopping and Acquisition Behaviors in Relation to BMI among Residents of Low-Income Communities in South Carolina.
Authors: Liese A.D. , Ma X. , Hutto B. , Sharpe P.A. , Bell B.A. , Wilcox S. .
Source: International journal of environmental research and public health, 2017-09-16; 14(9), .
EPub date: 2017-09-16.
PMID: 28926937
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Recruitment and Retention for the Evaluation of a Healthy Food Initiative in Economically Disadvantaged, Majority African American Communities.
Authors: Sharpe P.A. , Stucker J. , Wilcox S. , Liese A.D. , Bell B.A. .
Source: Family & community health, 2021 Jan/Mar; 44(1), p. 43-51.
PMID: 33214409
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