Farmers Markets and the Local Food Environment


Objective: To examine barriers to farmers' market (FM) use by Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) consumers receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families. Design: Focus groups. Setting: An urban community in Oklahoma. Participants: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program beneficiaries receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (n = 64 across 8 focus groups). Phenomenon of Interest: Perceptions about FM foods and barriers to FM use. Analysis: Transcript-based content analysis using the 5 dimensions of access framework. Results: Few participants ate fresh produce regularly and most appreciated the convenience of shopping at a supermarket. Farmers' markets were not perceived as available or accommodating to shopping needs and affordability and acceptability concerns were expressed. Few were aware of FMs that accepted SNAP. Emerging themes suggested residential segregation and cultural barriers to FM use. Conclusions and Implications: Farmers' market managers, community nutritionists, and researchers should develop interventions that correct common misperceptions about FM products, minimize access barriers, and increase awareness of SNAP payment options. Residential segregation and cultural barriers may have a role in FM use and should be explored further.


Wetherill, M., Gray, K., Farmers’ Markets and the Local Food Environment: Identifying Perceived Accessibility Barriers for SNAP Consumers Receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) in an Urban Oklahoma Community. Journal of Nutrition Education & Behavior. Volume: 47 Issue: 2 Pages: 127-133 Published: MAR/APR 2015.