Alysha Brady

Graduation Semester and Year




Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Urban Affairs


Urban and Public Affairs

First Advisor

Carl Grodach


Since the passage in 1976 of the Farmer-to-Consumer Direct Marketing Act, there has been a sharp rise in number of farmers markets in this country, from approximately 600 in the 1970s to over 7,000 today. With this increase, farmers markets began to attract attention not only from farmers and consumers, but also from public policy experts. Some research has suggested that farmers markets may be a way to alleviate the poor access to healthy foods in low-income communities, in areas known as food deserts. The WIC Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) and the Seniors Farmers Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) are both efforts to connect low-income individuals with farmers market produce. However, there is little data to suggest that farmers markets are located in food deserts often enough to have an impact. Additionally, previous research has shown that the average farmers market customer is an older, highly educated, middle-to-upper income female suggesting that low-income communities have not embraced farmers markets. This research seeks to shed more light on these issues. By combining data from a database of farmers markets maintained by the USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service, the food desert locator created by the USDA's Economic Research Service and demographic data collected by the 2006-2010 American Community Survey, this study provides a clearer vision of the community that farmers markets serve.


Public Affairs | Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | Social and Behavioral Sciences


Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington