Development and validation of a simple convenience store SHELF audit

Tanya M. Horacek, Elif Dede Yildirim, Erin Kelly, Adrienne A. White, Karla P. Shelnutt, Kristin Riggsbee, Melissa D. Olfert, Jesse Stabile Morrell, Anne E. Mathews, Terezie T. Mosby, Tandalayo Kidd, Kendra Kattelmann, Geoffrey Greene, Lisa Franzen-Castle, Sarah Colby, Carol Byrd-Bredbenner, Onikia Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background This paper describes the development, reliability, and convergent validity of a practical tool—the Convenience Store Supportive Healthy Environment for Life-Promoting Food (SHELF) Audit. Methods Audit items included: a variety of fresh, processed, and frozen fruits and vegetables; low-fat dairy products; healthy staples and frozen meals; healthy food incentive programs; items sold in check-out areas; portion/cup sizes; and pricing. Each audit item was scored using a five-point semantic-differential scale (1 = provides little or no support for healthful foods to 5 = provides high support for healthful foods). Convergent validity was examined by comparing the SHELF audit to Ghirardelli et al. and Laska et al. store audits. Statistical analysis included: Factor analysis, ANOVA, and Spearman correlations. Results SHELF included three factors: a Fruits/Vegetables scale (eight items, α = 0.79; total potential points = 34); a Healthy Foods scale (four items, α = 0.72; total potential points = 16); and a Supports scale (four items, α = 0.685; total potential points = 16). Only 6% of the 124 convenience stores assessed scored in the most healthful range (46–66). The assessed drug stores (n = 15) scored higher than convenience stores (n = 81) on the Healthy Foods and Supports scales but not the Fruits/Vegetables scale. The SHELF sub-scores were highly correlated with other audit tools indicating convergent validity. Conclusion The SHELF convenience store audit is a valid, reliable tool for assessing the degree to which convenience stores support healthfulness regarding Fruits/Vegetables, Healthy Foods, and Supports for choosing healthy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2676
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2018


  • Consumer food environment
  • Environmental audit
  • Fruit vegetable assessment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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