Essays on the Economics of Food Access in The United States
SCHAUDER, STEPHANIE Anne
Food access in the United States has been a topic of considerable debate for the past decade. This thesis explores three different facets of food access and provides policy implications to shed light on solutions. Chapter 2 analyzes the effect of the national Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Program (FFVP) on the formation of simulated preferences for healthy food. The results suggest that early and consistent exposure to FFVP is more beneficial than late or sporadic exposure conditional on the number of years of exposure. FFVP may also be more beneficial to children living in low food access areas. Chapter 3 models how income segregation affects food access in the presence of heterogeneous transportation costs. When there is high income segregation, the model suggests that grocery stores locate closer to wealthy individuals. However, when there is lower income segregation, the average distance any person has to travel to reach the grocery store is decreased. Chapter 4 explores the implications of a sprawl development pattern on grocery store location in the United States. There are fewer grocery stores in more car dependent areas because transportation costs are lower and grocery stores cannot differentiate of location to the same extent that they can when transportation costs are higher. Additionally, for those individuals who do not have cars, it is easier to walk and use public transportation in less car dependent areas. These three essays illuminate different aspects of food access and seek to inform the conversation on this topic.
Food Access; Food Preferences; Healthy Food; Income Segregation; Sprawl; Transportation Systems
Gao, Huaizhu; Ziebarth, Nicolas
Ph. D., Economics
Doctor of Philosophy
dissertation or thesis