Consumer use of food bank services: questions of timing and value
Byrne, Anne Teresa
Food banks and their affiliate pantries are an important part of the food assistance patchwork in the United States, feeding millions of individuals including many who are hungry and food insecure. This dissertation contains three essays which explore how consumers value food banks and pantries. The first essay detects a monthly cycle in food pantry use using administrative data from a food bank network in Colorado. It shows that food bank use increases at the end of the month, after SNAP (formerly “food stamps”) benefits have run out. The second essay uses revealed preference approaches to determine the value food banks offer to their communities and the people they serve, estimating that a single food bank network offers its clients approximately $300 in value each year. The third and final essay tests for negative perceptions of food pantry food, finding that particularly among nonusers there is a stigma associated with food from a pantry. It further finds that this stigma is mitigated through the use of images of food. Collectively these essays demonstrate how people use and value food banks and their pantries. This body of research shows that while this form of assistance appears to be a second (or even third) best option for many users, it is still important and valuable assistance.
consumer; food bank; intertemporal choice; nonprofit institutions; regional economics; welfare analysis
Just, David R.
Gomez, Miguel I.; Liaukonyte, Jura
Applied Economics and Management
Ph. D., Applied Economics and Management
Doctor of Philosophy
Attribution 4.0 International
dissertation or thesis
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as Attribution 4.0 International