A point-of-purchase intervention featuring in-person supermarket education affects healthful food purchases

J Nutr Educ Behav. 2012 May-Jun;44(3):225-32. doi: 10.1016/j.jneb.2011.05.016. Epub 2011 Nov 21.


Objective: This study tested the efficacy of a multicomponent supermarket point-of-purchase intervention featuring in-person nutrition education on the nutrient composition of food purchases.

Design: The design was a randomized trial comparing the intervention with usual care (no treatment).

Setting and participants: A supermarket in a socioeconomically diverse region of Phoenix, AZ. One hundred fifty-three adult shoppers were recruited onsite.

Intervention: The intervention consisted of brief shopping education by a nutrition educator and an explanation and promotion of a supermarket point-of-purchase healthful shopping program that included posted shelf signs identifying healthful foods, sample shopping lists, tips, and signage.

Main outcome measures: Outcomes included purchases of total, saturated, and trans fat (grams/1,000 kcal), and fruits, vegetables, and dark-green/yellow vegetables (servings/1,000 kcal) derived through nutritional analysis of participant shopping baskets.

Analysis: Analysis of covariance compared the intervention and control groups on food purchasing patterns while adjusting for household income.

Results: The intervention resulted in greater purchasing of fruit and dark-green/yellow vegetables. No other group differences were observed.

Conclusions and implications: Long-term evaluations of supermarket interventions should be conducted to improve the evidence base and to determine the potential for influence on food choices associated with decreased chronic disease incidence.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Choice Behavior
  • Diet Surveys / statistics & numerical data
  • Feeding Behavior*
  • Female
  • Health Education / methods*
  • Health Promotion / methods*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Nutritional Sciences / education*
  • Public Health