This approach to assessing food accessibility is useful if you do not have access to GIS or as a good starting point to understand local data.
Using the ABS data it is possible to generate good initial data on local issues. For example:
- start with the census tables (seehttp://www.abs.gov.au/websitedbs/censushome.nsf/home/data?opendocument&navpos=200)
- view census tables by location. Refine your search to suburb or statistical local area. The search provides a map image, so you can determine the boundaries of the data provided
- select topic by place of usual residence or place of residence on census night. Which search you choose will be influenced by what information you are seeking. Generally, by place of usual residence provides the best local data. Some of the data of interest may include:
- Age and population distribution
- Cultural and language diversity
- Home ownership
- Motor vehicle ownership
- Transport access and use (such as journey to work data)
- Combine this data with local knowledge and databases of type and location of food outlets to establish some good baseline data, such as:
- Location of liquor licences in relation to household income
- Location of takeaway outlets and fast food restaurants in relation to household income
- Location of supermarkets in relation to household income
- Distance from fresh food vendors in relation to number of vehicles per household
- Assess and report the ability of different household scenarios to afford healthy food based on income and other elements. Consider community renewal areas, areas of high unemployment, high child protection notifications, low community safety, and low literacy and numeracy etc.