Availability of Healthy Food in Different Categories of Markets
Objectives: The study is aimed at assessing and comparing the availability of healthy food among different types of markets; the price of healthy food between supermarkets, groceries and convenience stores; as well as the presence of the section that only contains healthy food. Methods: We divided markets into three categories (Supermarkets, Grocery stores, and Convenience stores) and divided Riyadh into 4 regions to ensure that the data represents the whole regions of Riyadh. The data was entered to Microsoft Excel 2010, and then transferred to Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS). Percentage was used to assess the level of the availability of healthy food and Chi-square was used to test for statistical differences. ANOVA and Post Hoc tests were used to assess the presence in difference of the price of healthy food. Results: Availability of healthy food items differs based on the size of the stores. Large stores contain more vegetables and fruit groups than small stores. Only drinks group showed no significant difference (p-value 0.465) with the highest percentage of availability among other groups; while, miscellaneous group showed the least percentage of availability between different markets. The difference in price between the three different commercial outlets is not significant except in meat group. Healthy food sections were found in two out of sixty markets. Conclusion: Availability of healthy food items increases with the increase of stores’ size. There is no price difference between different markets except meat group. Healthy food sections were found in two out of sixty markets.