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Health Place. 2013 Jan;19:1-14. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2012.09.010. Epub 2012 Oct 3.

Going outside the neighborhood: the shopping patterns and adaptations of disadvantaged consumers living in the lower eastside neighborhoods of Detroit, Michigan.

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  • 1Department of Geography, Michigan State University, 118 Geography Building, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA. ledouxti@msu.edu


This research employs household survey data and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to explore the core assumption underlying much of the food desert discourse that socially and economically disadvantaged residents shop in their immediate neighborhood food environment. Findings indicate that disadvantaged consumers living on the lower eastside of Detroit, Michigan bypass their neighborhood food environments, which are disproportionately composed of convenience and party stores, to shop at independent, discount and regional supermarkets located in other parts of the city and in the suburbs. These trends hold despite various economic and physical constraints to their mobility. These findings complicate past assumptions that socially and economically disadvantaged residents living in a food desert shop within their neighborhood environment.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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