There is an existing body of nationally based surveillance data pointing to fruit and vegetable
consumption patterns which identify South Dakota as having one of the lowest percentages of adults consuming vegetables three or more times per day, one of the lowest fruit intake percentages, as well as an ongoing downward trend. A small amount of South Dakota-specific data and assessment verifies these findings to some extent but does not give much insight as to why South Dakota ranks so low.
Formative research was conducted in the Fall of 2011 to assist in the identification of specific resistance points among South Dakotans. Information gleaned from a series of in-depth interviews with grocers and statewide focus groups provided insights related to attitudes, beliefs, and barriers around fruit and vegetable consumption. This foundational information was used as a springboard for the development of strategies to help improve the consumption of fruits and vegetables in South Dakota.
Quantitative research was also conducted in 2012 to provide additional insights. A statewide consumer poll surveyed South Dakota families who had at least one child or grandchild under the age of 18 living in the home. The objective was to concentrate the focus on those raising the newest generations of South Dakotans who also had the ability to make the most significant impact on overall healthy eating habits.