In search of a method to assess the availability, quality and price of vegetables and fruit.
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Herzfeld, Miriam and McManus, Alexandra (2007) In search of a method to assess the availability, quality and price of vegetables and fruit., Nutrition and Dietetics 64(4):248-253.
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The purpose of the study was to develop and trial a survey tool that could be used to gather evidence relating to vegetable and fruit availability, quality and price in urban fringe and rural communities. The study involved three components: a review of the literature to develop an understanding of the potential impact of availability, quality and price of vegetables and fruit on food choice and consumption patterns; development of a survey tool to assess the availability, quantity, variety and price of vegetables and fruit; and piloting of the survey tool in one urban fringe and one rural community in Tasmania. The food supply characteristic with the highest proportion of products rated the same by all raters was availability (94%) and variety (range 62–91%). There were significant variation between raters on quantity (8–66%), quality (18–53%) and price (56–94%). Difficulties encountered when piloting the survey tool included survey layout, details required, assessment of different varieties, interpreting the codes for quality and quantity, determining the price of products and the time taken to conduct the surveys. The study demonstrated the difficulties with measuring availability, quality and price of vegetables and fruit in urban fringe and rural communities in Tasmania. It is recommended that further work be undertaken on the survey tool to strengthen its reliability.
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