The acronym CHOMPS stands for “Coupons for Healthier Options for Minors Purchasing Snacks.” The work is being conducted by researchers at Tufts University and Michigan State University, in cooperation with Shape Up Somerville and other community partners and researchers. This project is supported by Agriculture and Food Research Initiative. Competitive Grant no. 2014-69001-21756 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
CHOMPS is a project designed to see if children and adolescents will buy healthier food items more often if they are given “kids-only” coupons to discount the price of healthier foods at local convenience stores. We know that children, on their own, spend a lot of money buying food when they are outside of school and home, and most of those food items are high-calorie snacks. Our study will explore and understand children’s reasons for buying snack foods outside of school and how important the price of those snack foods is when deciding to buy. We would like to use the information we learn in Somerville, MA to help design a larger project that promotes children’s healthy food choices in other communities as well.