Development and Validation of the Vending Evaluation for Nutrient-Density (VEND)ing Audit

Tanya M. Horacek, Elif Dede Yildirim, Melissa Matthews Schreiber, Carol Byrd-Bredbenner, Sarah Colby, Adrienne A. White, Karla P. Shelnutt, Melissa D. Olfert, Anne E. Mathews, Kristin Riggsbee, Lisa Franzen-Castle, Jesse Stabile Morrell, Kendra Kattelmann

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Abstract

Background: This paper describes the development and validation of the Vending Evaluation for Nutrient-Density (VEND)ing audit to comprehensively evaluate vended products based upon healthfulness, price and promotion, and machine accessibility. Methods: A novel vending nutrient-density score was created to determine the healthfulness of vended snack/beverage products. Field tested in United States colleges, VENDing audit (∑nutrient-density + 10 × % healthy products) and Support sub-scores (price + promotion + accessibility) were calculated for snack/beverage machines. Higher scores indicate more healthful vending options and supports for choosing healthfully. Nutrition Environment Measures Survey-Vending (NEMS-V) was used to validate the nutrient-density score for a sub-sample of machines. Sensitivity and specificity were computed by comparing the number of healthy snacks/beverages determined by NEMS-V and the VENDing nutrient-density scores. Results: Researchers conducted the VENDing audit on 228 snack/beverage vending machines at 9 universities within the United States and used both VENDing and NEMS-V on 33 snack and 52 beverage vending machines. Mean VENDing audit scores were 4.5 ± 2.0 (2.6, 3.4) and 2.6 ± 2.0 (0, 12) for snack/beverage machines, respectively. The number of products considered healthy assessed with both the VENDing nutrient-density scores and the NEMS-V were positively correlated for beverages (r = 0.687, p < 0.001) and snacks (r = 0.366, p < 0.05). The sensitivity was excellent for beverages (0.83) and moderate for snacks (0.69); while the specificity was moderate for both beverages (0.66) and snacks (0.50). Conclusions: The VENDing audit uses unique, valid, and reliable nutrient-density scoring to evaluate snacks/beverages along a continuum of healthful criteria and comprehensively evaluates the full vending environment.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume16
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 8 2019

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    Horacek, T. M., Yildirim, E. D., Matthews Schreiber, M., Byrd-Bredbenner, C., Colby, S., White, A. A., Shelnutt, K. P., Olfert, M. D., Mathews, A. E., Riggsbee, K., Franzen-Castle, L., Morrell, J. S., & Kattelmann, K. (2019). Development and Validation of the Vending Evaluation for Nutrient-Density (VEND)ing Audit. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16(3). https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16030514