Farmers’ Markets, More Analysis

I continue to explore the USDA Farmers Market database. See previous posts on this dataset here. Taking a look at just the Colorado portion of the data, we see there are 119 market points, shown as purple dots on the interactive map below:

powered by mapbiquity

It is interesting to see what happens when we quantify farmers’ markets, population density, and obesity rates. The number of farmers’ markets by population actually remains fairly constant (and fairly small) within all four categories: 0.001735%, 0.001975%, 0.001929%, 0.001875%* for categories 1-4 respectively where the categories are as follows:

1-12-25% obesity
2-25-30% obesity
3-30-35% obesity
4-35-45% obesity

However, the population density alone is very telling within the four categories (again from 1 through 4): 150/sq mi, 78/sq mi, 65/sq mi, 45/sq mi.*
*These figures are for the whole country, not just Colorado.

The correlation between population density alone and obesity is rather strong (also see: Distances to farmers’ markets is likely to be much lower in higher populated places, which may be a factor. The opposing viewpoint is that distances to fast food and other likely anti-correlates are also closer. Another point to make could be that effects on obesity by farmers’ markets (if any) might be a much more local scale issue, and if so, this data is not fine enough to capture that.

Here’s a micromap I put together with the market counts and the population density, by county.

Population per square mile:

Proportion of markets by population:

These three graphics just show population and farmers’ markets. Next I need to add in the obesity information so that we can have a visual of that with all the rest.

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