Pricing and promotion effects on low-fat vending snack purchases: The CHIPS study

S. A. French, R. W. Jeffery, M. Story, K. K. Breitlow, J. S. Baxter, P. Hannan, M. P. Snyder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

373 Scopus citations


Objectives. This study examined the effects of pricing and promotion strategies on purchases of low-fat snacks from vending machines. Methods. Low-fat snacks were added to 55 vending machines in a convenience sample of 12 secondary schools and 12 worksites. Four pricing levels (equal price, 10% reduction, 25% reduction, 50% reduction) and 3 promotional conditions (none, low-fat label, low-fat label plus promotional sign) were crossed in a Latin square design. Sales of low-fat vending snacks were measured continuously for the 12-month intervention. Results. Price reductions of 10%, 25%, and 50% on low-fat snacks were associated with significant increases in low-fat snack sales; percentages of lowfat snack sales increased by 9%, 39%, and 93%, respectively. Promotional signage was independently but weakly associated with increases in low-fat snack sales. Average profits per machine were not affected by the vending interventions. Conclusions. Reducing relative prices on low-fat snacks was effective in promoting lower-fat snack purchases from vending machines in both adult and adolescent populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)112-117
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2001


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