Formative Research for an Innovative Smartphone Application to Improve Distribution of Healthy Foods to Corner Stores in Baltimore City

Alexandra Ross, Nandita Krishnan, Janaki Panchal, Jennifer K. Brooks, Emily Lloyd, Ting Hsuan (Joyce) Lee, Joel Gittelsohn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We sought to collect information about the operations of wholesalers and store owner perceptions of smartphones to plan for and create a smartphone application that will facilitate the distribution of healthy foods to corner stores. In-depth interviews were conducted with wholesalers, corner store owners, distributors, and food environment experts in Baltimore City, Maryland, which included providing feedback for a mockup of the app. Store owners that were comfortable with smartphones liked the idea of the app because it was economically practical, culturally suitable, simple and easy to use, and provided a large variety of items at a fair or low price. We found that barriers to uptake among corner store owners would be high delivery costs, no foreign language capability, and a complicated user interface. This work will inform future projects that will utilize mHealth technology to improve distribution of healthier foods in food deserts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalEcology of Food and Nutrition
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2018

Keywords

  • food access
  • food deserts
  • mHealth
  • mobile applications
  • produce delivery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science
  • Ecology

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