Do the Poor Pay More for Food? An Analysis of Grocery Store Availabiliy and Food Prices Disparities

Journal of Consumer Affairs, Vol. 33, No. 2, 1999

21 Pages Posted: 8 Dec 2013

See all articles by Samuel Myers

Samuel Myers

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs

Chanjin Chung

Cornell University - Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management

Date Written: 1999

Abstract

Do the poor pay more food? To answer this question, this study was conducted to provide an empirical analysis of grocery store access and prices across inner city and suburban communities within the Minneapolis and St. Paul metropolitan area. The comparison among different types of grocers and geographic areas is drawn from a survey of approximately fifty grocery items for fifty-five stores. Results indicate that the poor pay only slightly more in the Twin Cities grocery market. More significantly, hose who shop in non-chain stores pay a significant premium, and the poor have less access to chain stores. The study reveals he the biggest factor contributing to higher grocery costs in poor neighborhoods is that large chain stores, where prices tend to be lower, are not located in these neighborhoods.

Keywords: empirical analysis, consumers, prices, grocery stores, poor, metropolitan area, premium, costs, non-chain stores, chain stores

Suggested Citation

Myers, Samuel and Chung, Chanjin, Do the Poor Pay More for Food? An Analysis of Grocery Store Availabiliy and Food Prices Disparities (1999). Journal of Consumer Affairs, Vol. 33, No. 2, 1999. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2364551

Samuel Myers (Contact Author)

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs ( email )

301 19th Ave S
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

Chanjin Chung

Cornell University - Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management ( email )

Ithaca, NY
United States

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