Food Systems

Enhancing and improving food systems in SNAP-Ed communities is a powerful way to encourage healthy choices where families make decisions about shopping, cooking, and eating.

Arizona SNAP-Ed Food Systems Activities

All activities take a Policy, Systems, and Environment (PSE) change approach:

  • Develop and support food systems policies at state, regional, county, or municipal levels.
  • Enhance and support the availability, distribution and promotion of nutritious foods at no-cost (i.e. Summer Food Service Program).
  • Increase availability of healthy food retail by supporting sites to accept SNAP, Double Up, WIC and/or FMNP, to improve promotion of healthy foods, and encourage increased redemption of benefits.
  • Train and connect local farmers and food producers to support locally based food access and food retail.
  • Train partners to implement and sustain community & home gardens.

Evaluation of Food Systems Activities

All Food Systems strategies are evaluated using a mixed methods approach:

  1. An online data collection system called SEEDS that collects information on what SNAP-Ed programming is being done in Food Systems.
  2. The Semi-Annual Report Narrative (SARN) allows SNAP-Ed programs to describe their work with Food Systems in words and images to understand why things are developing in certain ways.
  3. The Store Tracker for Opportunities in the Retail Environment (STORE) tool was developed by the Evaluation Team from an earlier version of the Shop Healthy assessment tool. It measures the healthy food supports in food retailers such as grocery and convenience stores. 
  4. The Food Systems and Active Living Goals Assessment (FACT GO) is a tool developed by the Evaluation Team to measure progress toward Food Systems and Active Living policy goals in particular communities. 

You can find training materials and resources for this year’s Food Systems evaluation plan here.