Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Food and Nutrition

First Advisor

Smith, Sylvia


Making healthy eating choices as a college student can be challenging and the transition from adolescence to adulthood can be associated with an increased likelihood of obesity. Studies have shown that college students have poor eating habits and frequent consumption of fast food meals. Studies have reported menu labeling to be effective in influencing college students' purchasing decisions. During the fall 2009 semester, the Saluki Select Healthy Eating Program was implemented in the Southern Illinois University Carbondale (SIUC) Student Center to aid college students and the public in general to make healthier menu choices. The purpose of this research study was to compare and analyze marketing techniques for promoting and selling these healthy menu options at the SIUC Student Center. Results showed that signage and suggestive selling increased awareness of Saluki Select foods. Signage and suggestive selling, however, were not found statistically significant for increasing sales of Saluki Select foods. These findings are important in the planning and implementation of marketing strategies on healthy food options in university dining centers, foodservice operations, and restaurants. This study can add to the current research on menu labeling by indicating that social marketing does, in fact, increase awareness of healthier food items.




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