This morning, I came across an article by Fooducate that highlights a recent study published in Public Health Nutrition on the major factors that play a roll in people’s food purchases.
A research paper published in Public Health Nutrition posits that price is less of a factor in deciding to buy vegetables and fruits. Rather, it’s the convenient access to quality produce that increased purchases. — Fooducate.com
Although this study focused greatly on low-income, primarily minority neighborhoods, I believe that access and convenience are major factors for people in general, no matter what the demographic is. When I read this article, my first thought was of how this study related to the demographic that I am focusing on for my thesis project : college students. While there are still those that are not interested in healthy eating, etc, there are, more than ever, more and more people who WANT to eat better. Even at the college level. There is definitely an increase in the number of college students interested in having more (better quality) healthy options available on-campus. Colleges are starting to take notice of this and some are even doing something about it, but there still many that are not (iceberg lettuce and soggy broccoli in the dining hall doesn’t count).
Also, while having access to quality produce is one factor, another factor is what to do with said produce. In this article by the Washington Post, they make the following statement:
This study fits well with Mark Bittman’s recent article that Americans aren’t skipping healthy food because of its high cost, but rather because cooking with fresh produce takes significantly more work.
It’s understandable that people feel this way, however, by understanding the simplest methods of food preparation, I feel that people could really get on board with eating more fresh produce. Through my thesis, I am going to incorporate an educational aspect that teaches college kids the simplest methods to prepare wholesome foods, methods that they can utilize with a variety of foods.
Two reader’s responses to Fooducate’s article said it best:
“What we’ve heard and seen (qualitatively) is that many people don’t purchase vegetable because they don’t quite know what to do with them.”
I’m in that boat. In an attempt to help overcome it, I’ve signed up as a CSA member for this upcoming growing season. Starting in a few weeks, I’ll get a box of produce weekly and will either have to figure out what to do with them or throw them out. Hopefully this will motivate me expand the number of vegetables in my “comfort zone” as well as expose my daughter to different foods. —Jason
I can’t agree more! Teaching our kids how to cook and feed themselves is just as important as teaching them to read and write. Maybe they’ll help show their parents what to do with those veggies! —Janet